On May 24, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said during the ongoing St. Petersburg International Economic Forum that the Damascus government will hand over a list of its representatives to the Syrian constitutional committee to the UN within 48 hours. The establishment of this committee was one of the main results of the Syrian National Dialogue Conference held in January.
The Russian Deputy Foreign Minister revealed that the committee will not include representatives of the Damascus government and the opposition as well as a group of experts. According to Bogdanov, it is unknown yet when the committee will begin its work.
“I think that we will work closely with all parties, including the Syrian government, in the light of the results of President Bashar al-Assad’s visit to Russia, and our other partners, including the two guarantors [Turkey and Iran],” RT quoted Bogdanov as saying during the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.
Bogdanov also hoped that the upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections in Syria will be held under the constitution that will be written by the new committee.
“I think it makes sense, of course, to hold presidential and possibly parliamentary and other elections, on the basis of agreements reached on constitutional reforms,” Bogdanov said.
Syria’s president Bashar al-Assad agreed to send representatives to the constitutional committee during his meeting with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, on May 17.
Despite the Bogdanov’s remarks, local observers believe that the constitutional committee mission will fail, as the government and the opposition failed to agree on any point during the previous rounds of the Geneva talks.