Syria talks in final day as tensions boil over US-led strike

Syria talks in final day as tensions boil over US-led strike

Syria talks in final day as tensions boil over US-led strike

Syria's main opposition High Negotiations Committee (HNC) leader Nasr al-Hariri, 2nd left, and UN Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Syria Staffan de Mistura, 3rd right, attend a round of negotiation, during the Intra Syria talks, at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, Tuesday, May 16, 2017.

Last month, the USA fired cruise missiles on a government air base after accusing Assad's military of killing scores of civilians with a sarin-like nerve agent.

"But we did discuss several substantive issues of key concern to the parties and we intend to move ahead on all four baskets in coming rounds, while the new process of having expert meetings will also continue", he added.

The sixth round of talks in Geneva was the latest effort to bring a political solution to the war.

In response to a question about the coincidence of the meeting with an American aggression and ISIL massacre against Syrians in addition to the ambition of achieving better results in this round, al-Jaafari said that the delegation discussed during today's session the USA attack on one of the Syrian Arab Army's military points on al-Tanf road in the Syrian Badia, which took place Thursday evening.

The atmosphere at the already hard talks were soured when the Syrian government negotiator Bashar al-Ja'afari describied a USA military strike in Syria on Thursday as "government terrorism" that had caused a massacre.

The strike was sharply condemned by Syria's government. UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura estimated in August that more than 400,000 people had been killed in the Syrian crisis until then.

The proposal, according to a document first released by the Al Jazeera news channel, foresees the creation of a "consultative" team which will be headed by experts from de Mistura's office and include qualified representatives from both the Syrian government and opposition.

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Syrian opposition activists say a suspected coalition airstrike has hit a convoy of pro-government forces in the desert near the border with Jordan.

The IS attack in the central Hama province, meanwhile, targeted villages where most residents belong to the Ismaili branch of Shiite Islam, raising fears of massacres such as those the Islamic State group carried out in other minority communities in Syria and Iraq. It identified residents as members of Assad's Alawite sect, an off-shoot of Shiite Islam.

Instead, the sole tangible product has been an agreement to set up technical committees to discuss constitutional issues with the United Nations.

"We are not increasing our role in the Syrian civil war, but we will defend our troops", Mattis said.

The IS-linked Aamaq news agency said the militants captured villages of Aqareb al-Safi and Mabouja.

The Syrian military official said today that the area attacked was a military position along the Tanf highway in the desert.

The IS-linked Aamaq news agency confirmed an attack is ongoing in the area without giving details.

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