Syrian peace talks showing no progress


Associated Press

Posted on February 11, 2014 at 5:07 PM

Updated Tuesday, Feb 11 at 5:33 PM

GENEVA (AP) — The Syrian peace talks in Switzerland appear to be bogged down -- with the U.N. mediator telling reporters "we are not making much progress."

The two sides can't even agree on an agenda to move the negotiations forward.

Mediator Lakhdar Brahimi (LAHK'-dar bra-HEE'-mee) says there has to be "cooperation from both sides" and a "lot of support from outside."

In Washington, President Barack Obama agreed that the talks are far from achieving their goal of ending a civil war that has claimed 130,000 lives. Speaking at a joint news conference with French President Francois Hollande (frahn-SWAH' oh-LAWND'), Obama said there's "enormous frustration" about the peace effort.

Talks between President Bashar Assad's government and the pro-Western opposition began last month, and then adjourned after a week. They resumed yesterday following a 10-day break.

The government wants the talks to focus on fighting what it calls "terrorism." The opposition wants to talk about a transition government to replace Assad.

%@AP Links

179-a-19-(President Barack Obama, at joint news conference with French President Francois Hollande)-"inside that country"-President Obama says the Syrian peace talks are 'far from achieving' the goals of halting the violence. (11 Feb 2014)

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151-a-17-(Lakhdar Brahimi, (LAHK'-dar brah-HEE'-mee), U.N. mediator, at news conference)-"we are doing"-U.N. mediator Lakhdar Brahimi tells reporters that talks on peace in Syria have bogged down, despite his personal commitment to finding common ground. (11 Feb 2014)

<<CUT *151 (02/11/14)££ 00:17 "we are doing"

APPHOTO GE501: U.N. mediator for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi informs to media after the second day of the 2nd round of negotiation between the Syrian government and the opposition, during a press conference at the European headquarters of the United Nations, in Geneva, Switzerland, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014. (AP Photo/Keystone,Salvatore Di Nolfi) (11 Feb 2014)

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