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US, Russia Can’t Agree on Date for Syria Peace Talks
by Jason Ditz
The Geneva II peace conference, which has had interim dates at several points over the last five months but never happened, is still without a date as the US and Russia have had another meeting in which they failed to agree on anything about the conference.
A big obstacle for setting a final date is that rebel factions keep ruling out attending, and insisting that instead of peace talks Geneva II should simply be about installing them as the new government.
Russia is holding out for Iran to be allowed to attend, and at this point it would seem like anyone willing to show up would be more or less welcome, but the US is insisting Iran can’t be involved.
In the end though, unless there is a major change by the rebels on the conference, whether or not it happens at all is really beside the point, as no ceasefire can possibly be negotiated if one side is totally absent.