UN security Council unanimously adopts resolution to conclude long-standing civil war in Syria

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U.S. President Barack Obama (R) chats with Russia's President Vladimir Putin prior to a working session at the Group of 20 (G20) leaders summit in the Mediterranean resort city of Antalya, Turkey, November 16, 2015. Reuters/Kayhan Ozer/Pool

An initiative by Russia and the United States to bring Bashar Al-Assad’s regime to a peace talk with the opposition forces has been supported unanimously by the United Nations Security Council in New York on Friday. A truce between the two forces would allow Russia and US to focus on the Islamic State militant group.

The move to end the almost five-year long civil war in Syria has been supported by a 17-nation group. It is expected to bring a rapid ceasefire in the conflict and bring the two forces to the negotiating table to begin peace talks from the next month.

“It is very good that the U.S. and Russia are trying to work together even if they have very different outcomes in mind,” Bloomberg quoted Joshua Landis, director of the Centre for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma, as saying. “Up until now, both sides have believed that an escalation in fighting could help turn the balance of power in their favor and bring their opponents to their knees.”

The International Syria Support Group that includes foreign ministers of 17 nations met in New York after the latest round of talks to renew the peace talks. The attention has now turned towards Russia and Saudi Arabia as both the nations take active part in pressurizing Syrian government and the opposition to enter into negotiating terms.

Though the US and its Arab allies still think that Assad should leave the office, Russia insists that the decision should be left to the Syrian people.

John Kerry, the US Secretary of State, said that the votes would encourage the peace talks to progress. He also emphasised that bringing an end to the Syrian civil war is also as important as the destruction of the Islamic State.

“We know that Daesh can never be allowed to gain control in Syria, so we have a global imperative here to deal with a terrorist entity but also to end the civil war," ABC quoted him as saying. "President Assad in our judgment has lost the ability, the credibility to be able to unite the country and to provide the moral credibility to be able to govern it. Purely as a matter of reality, if the war is to end it is imperative that the Syrian people agree to an alternative in terms of their governance."

Jordan's Foreign Minister on Friday presented a draft list of “terrorist” groups before the International Syria Support Group, which the parties will agree to exclude from the peace talks.

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