US hopes all will focus on ending Syria crisis

Washington, Jan 21: The US is hopeful that all parties can now focus on ending the Syria conflict, State Department said Monday, after UN withdrew the invitation to Iran to attend an upcoming peace conference in Switzerland.

“We are hopeful that, in wake of today’s announcement, all parties can now return to focus on the task at hand, which is bringing an end to the suffering of the Syrian people and beginning a process toward a long overdue political transition,” Xinhua quoted State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki saying in a statement.

The spokeswoman reiterated US stance that the purpose of the conference is the full implementation of the Geneva Communique, including the establishment by mutual consent of a transitional governing body with full executive authorities.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had rescinded his invitation to Tehran to participate in the Syrian peace conference slated Wednesday, his spokesman Martin Nesirky told reporters Monday afternoon.

“The secretary-general is deeply disappointed by Iranian public statements today that are not at all consistent with that stated commitment,” Nesirky said. “He continues to urge Iran to join the global consensus behind the Geneva Communique. Given that it has chosen to remain outside that basic understanding, he has decided that the one-day Montreux gathering will proceed without Iran’s participation.”

On Sunday, Ban said he had invited Iran, a main regional ally of the Syrian government, to attend the peace conference known as Geneva II.