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UN Mediator Of Syrian Peace Talks To Meet With Trump Advisers


UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura (file photo)

United Nations Syria mediator Staffan de Mistura said he will meet "people around the team" of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump to discuss the country's nearly six-year civil war.

He declined to elaborate on whom he would meet with from Trump's team and when. After briefing the UN Security Council, De Mistura told reporters on December 8 that he has ideas on fighting terrorism to present to Trump.

Trump has said his focus in the Middle East will be on eradicating Islamic State and other extremist groups, while he has belittled the Obama administration's strategy of backing some rebel forces fighting the Syrian government.

Since July 2014, de Mistura has been trying to broker peace.

Even though the Syrian regime appears close to retaking Aleppo, Syria's largest city, in what would be a major victory, De Mistura said he told the Security Council that it should try to renew discussions on a political settlement right now.

"Otherwise we will leave with the impression, which no one wants to have, that there is only a military victory or military solution," he said. "Military victories are not a victory for peace, because peace needs to be won separately."

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, and Reuters
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