Maria Zakharova: “The United States not to attend the meeting of Sochi on Syria seeks to downplay the formula of Astana and questioning the mediation efforts”
Russia on Monday (July 30th) expressed regret that the United States had refused to be invited to participate in Sochi meeting on Syria as an observer.
“The United States by not attending Sochi meeting on Syria seeks to downplay Astana formula and question mediation efforts,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova was quoted as saying by the Russian news agency Sputnik.
“The American side rejected the invitation to participate in this event as an observer. This reaction is regrettable, and we mean that assurances are always issued from Washington about the willingness to contribute to the establishment of a political process in Syria. The current meeting in Sochi is specifically dedicated to this purpose. ”
“We see the United States unwilling to send its representatives to Sochi, in order to downplay Astana formula and question the implementation of mediation efforts on those Syrian issues that Washington can not put under its control,” Zakharova said.
The Deputy Foreign Minister spokesman, Artyom Kojin said “Russia will invite representatives of Russia, Iran and Turkey, as guarantors to Astana process of the Syrian settlement, the delegations of the Syrian government and the Syrian opposition, and observers from the United Nations and Jordan. We have also sent an invitation to the United States. ”
On July 26, however, the US State Department announced that Washington would not participate in Sochi conference on the Syrian settlement.
“The United States will not attend as an observer or any official status,” a State Department official said. “Our focus is on negotiating under UN auspices in Geneva and making significant progress in these negotiations. Channels and other diplomatic places divert attention from the implementation of Security Council resolution 2254 “.