White House: diplomacy key to ending Syria conflict

U.N. chief ‘convinced’ Syria peace talks are best way forward

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Diplomacy remains the best way to solve the crisis in Syria the United States is considering other options, White House spokesman Jay Carney said on Tuesday, after a second round of peace negotiations broke up in Geneva over the weekend without making progress.

U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon, meanwhile, is convinced that Geneva peace talks are the best way to resolve the Syrian conflict and urges all sides to return to the table, his spokesman said Tuesday, according to AFP.

Just weeks after the warring parties sat down for the first time to seek a political settlement to the three-year civil war, a second round ended in acrimony over the weekend.

“The secretary general remains convinced that Geneva II is the way to go, and he is looking at the parties to think long and hard and to come back as soon as possible so that this process can continue,” spokesman Martin Nesirky told reporters.

“This is a process, not a single event taking place in one or two meetings... this is going to take a long time.”

“The secretary general remains determined to push ahead with this, as is (UN mediator Lakhdar) Brahimi,” Nesirky added.

Brahimi said Saturday he was “very, very sorry” after the talks between the Syrian regime and the opposition broke off without result after three weeks. No date has been set for a resumption of negotiations.

Nesirky said Brahimi would be coming to New York “at some point” to brief Ban and the Security Council on his mission.

[With AFP and Reuters]