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Syrian Constitutional Committee to begin working on drafting constitution

The UN Special Envoy to Syria announced that the Syrian Constitutional Committee agreed to draft new constitutional provisions following UN-mandated negotiations in Geneva.

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The UN’s special envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen, annouced that the Syrian Constitutional Committee has agreed to start drafting a new constitution,

Geir Pedersen told reporters in Geneva that “the two co-chairs now agree that they will not only prepare for constitutional reform, but they will prepare and start drafting for constitutional reforms.” The statement comes ahead of the committee’s sixth session, which is set to start Monday.

The special envoy added: “So, the new thing this week is that we will actually be starting a drafting process for constitutional reform in Syria.”

After a nearly nine-month hiatus, the leading members of the constitution committee, consisting of 15 members apiece from the Syrian opposition, NGOs, and the Bashar al-Assad regime, will be meeting again in Geneva.

Pedersen also said that he met the representatives of the Syrian opposition, NGOs, and the Assad regime separately on Sunday morning.

“For the first time, the two co-chairs, the one nominated by the opposition and the other nominated by the Assad regime, sat down together with me for a substantial and frank discussion on how we are to proceed with the constitutional reform and how we are planning for the week ahead of us,” he added.

He also said that the drafting committee has met five times, but that they did not making sufficient progress.”

During Pedersen’s meeting with Hadi Al Bahra, the committee’s opposition co-chair, and Ahmad Nabil al-Kuzbari, the regime co-chair, Alessandra Vellucci, head of the UN Information Service in Geneva, was also present.

The committee meetings, which started in October 2019 with 150 members, are the first concrete step to draft a new constitution to determine Syria’s future.

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