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UN Envoy Backs Syrian Opposition's Call For Talks

UN-Arab League peace envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi
The joint UN-Arab League envoy to Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, says he backs a Syrian opposition leader's call for dialogue to end the crisis.

Brahimi said in Cairo on February 17 that the proposal by Mouaz al-Khatib, the president of the opposition coalition, "has opened the door and challenges the Syrian government to fulfill its often-repeated assertion that it is ready for dialogue and a peaceful settlement."

Brahimi was speaking following talks with Arab league chief Nabil Elaraby.

In a statement on February 17, the opposition's main umbrella group, the Syrian National Coalition, said it would not allow President Bashar al-Assad or members of his security services to participate in any talks.

Damascus has ruled out opposition demands that Assad step down to end the crisis in Syria

Based on reporting by AP and AFP