Russian Ambassador to Ankara Aleksei Erkhov stated that the Sochi congress which was held on Jan. 29-30 was a victory.
Speaking to Daily Sabah, the ambassador noted that the congress is a victory for the guarantor states of Astana process - Turkey, Russia and Iran - and he accepted that some problems occurred during the congress. He said, "There were, of course, some minor problems, we accept this. But it is a natural process. No one expected that it would be perfect. But it is important that the congress took place and was successful. All sides, including Turkey and Iran, share the same point of view."Touching upon the Syrian opposition's return to Turkey due to the Syrian regime's flags and logos at the Sochi airport and congress hall, the Russian Ambassador noted that the congress was held together for the first time and that it is normal to see some problems. Ambassador Erkhov underlined that owing to the efforts of Turkish partners the negative effect was smoothed. "It is important that one should be wise enough not to dwell on a little thing; we must keep focused to be able to achieve a big result. We will take into account the flags and logo issue and take the necessary steps to prevent such issues," added the ambassador.
Referring to the THKP-C terrorist organization's leader Mihraç Ural, who is responsible in the terrorist attack in Turkey's Reyhanlı in 2013, the ambassador said that he couldn't understand how it turned out that Ural was present at the Congress. "It is true that he was not on the list that was decided by Turkey, Iran and Russia. Now, the competent authorities in Russia are investigating how he arrived there and we will inform our Turkish partners regarding the incident once we obtain enough information," added the ambassador. He also noted that such an incident will not harm the mutual steps taken by Russia and Turkey.
The summit - backed by Turkey, Russia, and Iran - was held in the Russian Black Sea city of Sochi on Jan. 29-30. It was an attempt to bring all warring parties in the Syrian conflict, excluding the terrorist groups, to the table to facilitate the U.N.-sponsored peace talks in Geneva.
A proposal to form a constitutional committee was agreed upon on Monday by the representatives from the Syrian regime and the guarantor countries of Russia, Iran and Turkey.
Parties at the two-day summit also said in a final statement that they want to bring an end to the ongoing conflict as soon as possible, and urged international help towards that end.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and President Vladimir Putin also hailed the decision at Sochi to form a constitutional committee as its "most important outcome," asserting that the progress made at the meeting enhances both the Astana and Geneva peace talks and U.N. Security Council resolutions.
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