Secretary-General Welcomes Constitutional Committee as First Step Out of Tragedy in Syria, Calls for Meaningful Engagement

The following statement by UN Secretary-General António Guterres was issued today:

On the eve of its launch, I welcome the unique opportunity provided by the Syrian-owned and Syrian-led Constitutional Committee that will be inaugurated tomorrow in Geneva with the United Nations’ facilitation.

For the first time, the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic and the opposition Syrian Negotiations Commission, along with civil society, will sit together and take the first step on the political path out of the tragedy of the Syrian conflict.  I am pleased that women’s representation on the committee is very near 30 per cent — the United Nations has been steadfast to secure that minimum threshold.

I fully expect that the parties will work together in good faith towards a solution in line with resolution 2254 (2015) that meets the legitimate aspirations of all Syrians and is based on a strong commitment to the country’s sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity.

The Constitutional Committee’s launch and work must be accompanied by concrete actions to build trust and confidence.  Meaningful engagement in the Constitutional Committee, accompanied by a cessation of hostilities across the country, will provide my Special Envoy with an environment he requires to effectively discharge his mandate to facilitate a broader political process.

For information media. Not an official record.