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Iran welcomes new UN peace initiative for Syria

Iran has welcomed the new UN peace initiative for conflict-stricken Syria, saying the plan indicates the world body’s better understanding of the realities in the Arab country.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Marzieh Afkham, was reacting Thursday to UN special envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura’s plan for the resolution of the Syria crisis through talks among “intra-Syrian working groups.”

“His new plan could be assessed in a way as approaching closer to a correct perception of ongoing realities on Syria’s political scene and battlefields on the part of regional and international players,” ISNA news agency quoted Afkham as saying.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran believes that the Syrian people and government play the main and fundamental role in leaving behind this sensitive juncture, and the international community could also help Syria on this path within the framework of its tasks,” she added.

The UN Security Council (UNSC) has approved the plan by de Mistura, which mainly notes that “the only sustainable solution to the current crisis in Syria is through an inclusive and Syrian-led political process that meets the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people.”

A UNSC statement on August 17 urged all parties involved in the Syrian crisis “to engage in good faith” with de Mistura to implement the peace initiative, which is set to begin in September and will focus on issues including simultaneous discussions among the Syrian parties on the key aspects of a roadmap adopted in 2012.

The foreign-sponsored conflict in Syria, which flared up in March 2011, has reportedly claimed more than 240,000 lives up until now.

The UN says the militancy has displaced more than 7.2 million Syrians internally, and compelled over four million others to take refuge in neighboring countries, including Jordan and Lebanon.

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