UN envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura (C), arrives at his hotel with Syrian assistant foreign minister, Ayman Sosan (2nd from R), on January 8 , 2016 in Damascus. AFP PHOTO / LOUAI BESHARA
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Friday's statement by prominent rebel groups that support the idea of a political solution follows a meeting this week between a new opposition council and U.N. envoy Staffan de Mistura, who aims to start negotiations on Jan. 25 in Geneva.The diplomatic drive follows the Dec. 18 adoption of a U.N. Security Council resolution endorsing an international plan for a Syria peace process to end a five-year-long war that has killed 250,000 people.The plan envisages a nationwide ceasefire and six months of talks beginning in January between Assad's government and the opposition on forming a unity government.Makhous said that visit would shed light on the Syrian government's position and give a better idea of whether the negotiations could go ahead.
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