The U.N. special envoy for Syria said Thursday he is “quietly hopeful” the United Nations can announce agreement to launch a Syrian constitutional committee before world leaders gather in late September, which could open the door to a broader political process to end the eight-year conflict.
Geir Pedersen told the Security Council that the package to resolve outstanding names and terms of reference and rules of procedure “is nearly finalized, and the outstanding differences are, in my assessment, comparatively minor.”
Looking at Syria today, he painted a grim picture of a country with large areas fragmented between different parties and called the scale of violence and instability “extremely alarming.”
Pedersen criticized the Syrian government offensive in the last rebel-held stronghold in Idlib in northwest Syria that began in late April and has led to escalating casualties and massive displacement.
“The actions that are killing and displacing them must stop now,” he said. “The situation in Idlib needs a predominantly political solution.”
Since the beginning of the brutal military campaign against Idlib and it's countrysides, hundreds of civilians have been killed and more than 576,000 people have been displaced according to the UN.