Russian Lawmaker Says Holding Syria Talks in Doha Difficult After Diplomatic Row



Deputy head of Russia's State Duma Committee on Foreign Affairs Alexei Chepa stated that Qatar's initiative to contribute to Syrian conflict resolution deserves praise.

Qatar's desire to help in Syria crisis settlement could be welcomed, but it would be difficult to turn Doha into a new platform for talks due to a strained political situation around the country, deputy head of Russia's State Duma Committee on Foreign Affairs Alexei Chepa told Sputnik Sunday.

Earlier in the day, Qatari Ambassador to Russia Fahad Mohammed Attiyah told Sputnik that Qatar was ready to offer Doha as a negotiation platform for all parties engaged in the Syrian conflict settlement.

"Presently, we are actively using two platforms for the peaceful settlement: the platforms in Geneva and Astana. 

I think that it would be hard to use an additional platform due to a difficult political situation in Qatar, it is much better to full out the two existing platforms with work," Chepa said.

The lawmaker, nevertheless, stressed that Qatar's initiative to contribute to Syrian conflict resolution deserves praise.

In early June, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates broke off diplomatic relations and communication with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism and interfering in their internal affairs. 

Kuwait acting as a mediator in the crisis, handed over to Doha the ultimatum of the four Arab states with 13 demands, which Doha refused to comply with.

The civil war in Syria between the government and various opposition and terror groups has been raging since 2011. 

The international community has taken a number of steps aimed at settlement of the crisis, including via different formats of talks, in particular, in Geneva and Astana.

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