The intra-Syrian talks in Astana proved successful and showed the world that there was a basis for dialogue between the opposing parties, Deputy Chairman of Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party Mehmet Mehdi Eker said in an interview with TASS on Wednesday.
“The Astana talks proved to be unprecedentedly successful. This is both Turkey and Russia’s success because if not for our countries, these talks would not have taken place,” he stressed. “Thanks to the Astana talks, the world has come to see that opposing sides can sit together at the negotiating table and talk,” he added. Eker also said that “the sides that are used to stare at each other through scopes came together in Astana.”
“The Astana talks marked the first step in settling the Syrian crisis. Close cooperation between Turkey and Russia resulted in a ceasefire established in Aleppo. The Geneva talks on Syria will take place later this month. We continue to work so that positive effect could be felt there as well,” Eker added.
When asked if the Astana talks could become an alternative to the Geneva negotiations, he noted that “it will become clear later, when the sides make their assessments and begin to implement agreements.” “The matter is that real players, including Turkey, Russia, Iran, Syria and the United Nations gathered in Astana, while the Geneva platform is broader, other global players are participating in the Geneva process. If Astana talks result in a compromise, then the parties won’t need another platform,” the deputy chairman of Turkey’s ruling party concluded.