Syrian Peace Conference Set for Nov. 23-24, Deputy Premier Says

International peace talks known as Geneva II and aimed at ending the more than 2 1/2-year conflict in Syria have been provisionally scheduled for Nov. 23-24 , according to the country’s deputy prime minister.

The date for the conference was set at a meeting with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, Qadri Jamil told reporters in Moscow today.

Geneva II is a “way out for everyone, for the Americans, for Russia, for the Syrians, the opposition,” Jamil said. It has to take place “because all sides are at a dead-end, a military and political dead-end.”

Efforts to convene the conference have intensified since Russia and the U.S. reached an agreement last month in Geneva to destroy Syria’s chemical weapons, averting an American military strike in retaliation for a chemical attack allegedly carried out by Syrian government forces on Aug. 21. The Syrian opposition hasn’t accepted the U.S.-Russian invitation to attend the talks.

Syrian National Council head George Sabra said Oct. 13 that his group, one of the leading anti-government movements, won’t go to the conference.

The meeting should take place even if not all opposition forces want to attend, Jamil told Russian state television two days ago.

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