Syrian Constitutional Committee gets underway in Geneva

ANKARA

Syrian Constitutional Committee — made up of opposition, civil society and regime members — began its work on Wednesday in Geneva with the UN’s facilitation.

The committee is mandated, within the context of a UN-facilitated Geneva process, to prepare and draft for popular approval a constitutional reform that will pave the way for a political settlement in Syria.

UN special envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen, together with the Constitutional Committee co-chairs, Ahmad Kuzbari from the Syrian regime, and Hadi Albahra from the opposition, launched the start of the committee’s work in an opening ceremony with its 150 members.

“This is a historic moment,” Pedersen said during the opening ceremony.

Pedersen expects the committee to be “patient and persistent”.

Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since early 2011, when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, over 5 million civilians have become refugees. Turkey hosts 3.6 million of them, the most any country does in the world.
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