BRUSSELS, Jan. 20 (Xinhua) -- The European Union (EU) on Monday called on international partners to format a transitional governing body (TGB) during the upcoming Geneva II Syria peace conference.
Foreign ministers of the 28-member bloc adopted a conclusion on Syria reiterating that the TGB should be with full executive powers, including over security, military and intelligence and that any elections in Syria should only take place within the framework of the Geneva communique.
The EU also urged the Syrian government, as well as the opposition, to commit themselves to the full implementation of the communique and demonstrate commitment through their actions.
The conclusion said that the EU shared growing concern about the spread of extremism and extremist groups, including ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) and Jabhat al-Nusra.
"Their involvement in the conflict poses a threat to the peace process, the territorial integrity of Syria and to regional and international security," read the EU conclusion.
The Geneva II international peace conference on Syria will take place on Jan. 22.
Syrian opposition suspends participation in Geneva II
ISTANBUL, Jan. 20 (Xinhua) -- Syria's main opposition group in exile Syrian National Coalition (SNC) said here on Monday that it suspends its participation in Geneva II conference due to UN's invitation to Iran.
The SNC spokesman Louay Safi said in the announcement that it suspends the participation unless UN rescinds its invitation to Iran or Iran accepts the Geneva I communique. Full story
UN chief welcomes Syrian opposition's agreement to attend Geneva II
UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Saturday welcomed the Syrian opposition's agreement to take part in next week's international conference in Switzerland to seek an end to Syria conflict.
In a statement issued here by his spokesperson, Ban said the decision was "a courageous and historic step in the interest of a negotiated political solution to a three-year conflict that has caused so much misery and destruction." Full story
News Analysis: Geneva II could be start of solution to Syria crisis despite hurdles
DAMASCUS, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- The countdown for the International Geneva II conference on the Syrian crisis has begun, as Syrian analysts deem it as the beginning of a solution despite the low expectations by the domestic opposition groups.
Elias Murad, president of the Union of Journalists of Syria, told reporters on Saturday that the Geneva II conference has become an international demand more than a Syrian one. Full story