Members of Turkish, Syrian armed opposition arrive for talks in Astana

Syria peace talks set for Feb. 23: UN

Sharif said de Mistura was instead sending a team of five people to the Astana talks, which will be attended by representatives from Russia, Iran and Turkey.

Kazakhstan has invited Syrian rebels and government officials to peace talks on Wednesday and Thursday in Astana, after a first round last month organised by regime backers Russian Federation and Iran and rebel ally Turkey.

But some of Syria's rebels say they won't begin negotiating a political settlement with the government until measures are taken to bolster a flagging cease-fire and address urgent humanitarian concerns.

In another session held late Tuesday, Ansari met Bashar al-Jaafari, Syria's ambassador to the United Nations, and exchanged views about the agenda of the upcoming Astana talks.

Kazakhstan on February 15 said talks had been moved one day to February 16 for unspecified "technical reasons".

Mohammed Alloush, the head of the Saudi-backed High Negotiation Committee (HNC) delegation, arrived in Astana late on Wednesday, an indication that the opposition has not come to the one-day meeting with enthusiasm, especially because he said the opposition was not aware of the agenda.

More Than 680 Arrested In Raids Targeting Undocumented Immigrants
The majority of those arrested last week had criminal records but some were for misdemeanour crimes, such as traffic violations. He said the focus of the recent raids was on risky criminals, but said it also included anyone who had broken immigration laws.

The first set of talks on Syria that took place in the Central Asian country's capital in January did not result in any significant breakthrough.

In other words, Astana II is just a stepping stone for the upcoming Geneva next week where the HNC is prepared to engage in negotiations over political issues, including the future government of Syria.

De Mistura's office announced yesterday that he has sent out letters of invitation for the Geneva talks, now set to begin on February 23, with initial consultations taking place on February 20.

Jaafari has told Russian agency RIA Novosti that one-on-one meetings between the opposition and the government were "not planned".

Russia, which backs President Bashar al-Assad's government, and Turkey, which supports the rebels, are brokering the talks.

"As a result, the successes realized since December 29 and what we observe right now are better than the aforementioned date", he said.

Related News:

  • Trump's Labor Secretary Nominee Puzder Withdraws Nomination

    Trump's Labor Secretary Nominee Puzder Withdraws Nomination

    During one of his confirmation hearings, Puzder confirmed that he and his wife had employed an undocumented housekeeper for years. Puzder was less a Labor Secretary nominee and more a caricature of what a ridiculous cabinet selection looks like.
    Strike-hit Kashmir tense after civilian killings at Kulgam encounter

    Strike-hit Kashmir tense after civilian killings at Kulgam encounter

    The army in a statement said that the four terrorists killed in the encounter belonged to Lashkar-e-Toiba and Hizb-ul-Mujahideen. On Sunday, people gathered in thousands at the funeral of the militants and the civilians.
    Australian authorities arrest Hitler lookalike

    Australian authorities arrest Hitler lookalike

    During Nazi rule, the house was transformed into a shrine to Hitler as the town drew in a wave of tourists. The incident comes amid an ongoing legal dispute over Hitler's birthplace.
  • County reports third flu death

    County reports third flu death

    Additionally, if you feel any flu symptoms, it is smart to go to the doctor and get tested for influenza as soon as possible. Only hospitalized cases of flu, pediatric flu death or Novel Influenza A cases are reportable to the local health department.
    Samsung chief in second grilling over corruption claims

    Samsung chief in second grilling over corruption claims

    The prosecution has also identified four other Samsung executives as suspects and have summoned three of them. The secret confidante is on trial for charges including corruption and coercion.
    Joe Root will be Alastair Cook's successor as England Test captain

    Joe Root will be Alastair Cook's successor as England Test captain

    Ben Stokes is expected to be named vice-captain as the new generation of England players takes over formal leadership roles. After Alastair Cook stepped down last week, the Selectors and I engaged in the proper process to appoint his successor.
  • Half-brother of North Korean dictator assassinated

    Half-brother of North Korean dictator assassinated

    North Korea also has a history of dispatching spies to kill high-level defectors critical of its system. Kim Jong-un had issued a "standing order" for his half-brother's assassination.
    400 whales stranded on New Zealand beach

    400 whales stranded on New Zealand beach

    The whale stranding, at Farewell Spit at the top of South Island, is one of the worst ever in New Zealand. And Farewell Spit is located on the north end of Golden Bay, a known hotspot for pilot whale strandings.
    North Korean leader's brother reported killed in Malaysia

    North Korean leader's brother reported killed in Malaysia

    Up until about 2012 , Kim Jong Nam was said to be, a Chinese administrative region the Week once compared to Las Vegas. He was also said to be close to Jang Song-thaek, who was reportedly executed in a 2013 purge ordered by Kim Jong-un.
  • Pressure on Wenger to break Bayern curse in Champions League

    Pressure on Wenger to break Bayern curse in Champions League

    Eventually, it was an error from Lewandowski in an unfamiliar position on the pitch that gave the Gunners a vital away goal . Neuer saved Sanchez's penalty, but the Chile global drilled home the rebound from a tight angle at the second attempt.
    Trump adviser: New executive orders on immigration 'an option'

    Trump adviser: New executive orders on immigration 'an option'

    Even though Trump won the presidency by way of the electoral college, he lost the popular vote. White House officials did not give Miller "anything to say" on the matter, he said .
    Storm progresses as expected; snow coming soon

    Storm progresses as expected; snow coming soon

    February 2006: Snow piled up to 26.9 inches over more than two days, forcing city officials to cancel flights and rail service. Residents are asked to remove any vehicles from the roadway to assist the Department of Public Works in removing the snow.


Most liked

Watch a Live Feed of California's Failing Oroville Dam
Brown's plan calls for the high-speed rain to run from the Los Angeles area in the south to San Francisco Bay area in the north. As of noon Tuesday, the lake had dropped 15 feet to 887.94 feet elevation since it peaked Sunday above capacity at 902.1 feet.

A new WWE Champion was crowned at Elimination Chamber
Ask me 'Elimination Chamber show? Then entered Dean Ambrose who was followed by Baron Corbin, The Miz and finally it was Wyatt. One of the key storylines on this season of Total Divas on E! was Brie Bella's retirement match at WrestleMania a year ago .

Senate Investigation of Trump, Flynn and Russia Moving Forward
It would be up to the Jeff Sessions Justice Department to review the transcript and bring a case, if it saw fit. He had "no problem" with Flynn talking to the Russians, according to White House press secretary Sean Spicer.

New round of talks on Syria conflict on Wednesday
The resolution, which was unanimously adopted in December 2015, aims to establish governance and come up with a new constitution. However, Russia, Iran and Turkey agreed that the rebels should take part in UN-led peace talks opening in Geneva on February 20.

Nana-Nana-Nope: New Rumours That Affleck Wants To Quit As Batman
The latest rumor about Affleck and The Batman comes to us from our friends over at Collider via their Collider Heroes show . What has come out of the conversation with all three was this. "He doesn't want to be Batman anymore".

Royals sign pitcher Travis Wood to two-year deal
Wood appeared in 259 games for the Cubs over seven seasons, including 133 starts. "Wherever I fit in is what I'll do". Wood made 77 appearances, going 4-0 with a 2.95 ERA in 61 innings.

USA bridges structurally deficient; 900 in Texas
Louisiana's top structurally deficient bridges are in Caddo, Jefferson, Calcasieu, Orleans, Bossier, Ouachita and St. The state has already identified 4,075 bridges that need fix , which comes with a price tag of $12 billion.

Sonos hikes United Kingdom prices by 25% due to effects of Brexit
In some cases, prices are increasing as much as 25%, and when we're talking about the high-end, that kind of jump can hurt. Its CONNECT: AMP and BOOST products will increase by a sizable 25% to £499 and £99, respectively.

JC Penney Company Inc (JCP) Moves on Morgan Stanley Upgrade
The department store operator reported ($0.21) EPS for the quarter, meeting the Thomson Reuters' consensus estimate of ($0.21). In the last 27 earnings reports, the company has topped earnings-per-share estimates 58% percent of times.

Germany's ex-Foreign Minister Steinmeier likely to become president
Right-wing opposition leader Petr Fiala (Civic Democrats, ODS) said Steinmeier was an experienced politician and diplomat. He is aware of the fact that the world is going through tough times, his democratic country will try to create stability.

Pittsburgh-area gasoline prices fall to $2.56
The average gas price in Rockford is now 18.9 cents lower than a month ago, but 65.7 cents higher than this same time past year . The U.S. average dropped 7.1 cents during the past month but moved up 57.9 cents during the past 12 months.

Pepper gas causes chaos in Hamburg Airport, Germany
Firefighters were examining them to find out whether they had to be taken to the hospital, the German news agency dpa reported. According to live flight tracking website flightradar24.com some flights were diverted to other airports after the incident.

Jordan Spieth sounds off on adult autograph-seeking 'scums'
Australian Day had to contend with driving wind and rain over his last four holes before organisers halted play at 1:34 p.m. Elsewhere in golf, Tiger Woods has announced he will not compete in his next two scheduled tournaments due to back spasms.

7 magnitude quake rocks Surigao City
Be proactive - Use the "Flag as Inappropriate" link at the upper right corner of each comment to let us know of abusive posts. Damage has been also found on the runway of the Surigao City Domestic Airport, forcing the cancellation of all flights.

Protesters demonstrate over federal Planned Parenthood funding
But Cole Black, who is 45 and from Fuquay-Varina, spoke in favor of the services provided by Planned Parenthood. Reporter Ashley Collins reported live from the scene of a protest against Planned Parenthood in Naples.