Syria's political process must be re-energised: UN chief
Posted on Mar 15 2014 | IANS
United Nations, March 15 : UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has again appealed to the international community to help bring the rival Syrian parties closer on concrete measures to end the conflict, saying "it is not enough for representatives of the government and opposition to be in the same room, what matters most is what they do there."
"The political process is in crisis," Ban told reporters after the closed door session with the UN General Assembly Friday.
"After two rounds of talks (in Geneva), neither side is displaying any will to compromise or any true awareness of the suffering of the Syrian people," he said.
"I strongly urge the Syrian government and the opposition to show the leadership, vision and flexibility needed to end the conflict."
Turning to Russia and the US, as the initiating states of the Geneva Conference on Syria, he urged those governments "to take clear steps to re-energise the political process".
UN and Arab League Joint Special Representative for Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, who also participated in Friday's briefing to the General Assembly, asked the Security Council to help push for a political solution through the Geneva process.
The basis for those talks is full implementation of an action plan adopted in the Geneva Communique of 2012, the first international conference on the conflict, which calls for a transitional government to lead to free and fair elections.
Two rounds of talks earlier this year saw both sides sticking to their positions and yielded only modest cooperation on a humanitarian issue related to aid access in the long-besieged Old City of Homs.
In his remarks Friday, Ban also called for an end to the flow of arms and fighters fueling the violence.
"All those who persist in seeking a military solution are making a political solution even more distant and elusive," he stressed.