The Syrian government delegation led by Bashar Jaafari was not concerned about the Syrian armed opposition’s decision to not participate in the Astana-3 talks and expressed hope for their positive outcome.
“We sincerely wish the Astana track to be fruitful and to lead to an island of security that will serve Syrian people’s interest, regardless of Syrian opposition presence. We have arrived here not to meet with the representatives of armed groups but to meet with two guarantor states — Iran and Russia… [The armed opposition’s] participation is out of our concern,” Jaafari told reporters.
According to the Syrian government negotiator, the opposition’s move proves that it is weak and not independent.
“The opposition’s decision not to participate indicates its weakness and the lack of independence. The decision, whether to participate or not is a political one. It is made not by the opposition, but by its patrons. Secondly, it is the matter of concern of the three guarantor states and when one of the guarantors is not fulfilling its commitments, I mean Turkey, then we have to ask Turkey about the participation of these groups,” Jaafari said.