US will be invited to Astana talks on Syria: Turkish FM

But, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu stresses, Turkey will not accept terrorist PYD/YPG being included in peace talks

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said Saturday that the United States would be invited to the Jan. 23 Syrian peace summit in Astana, Kazakhstan.
Speaking to reporters at the 9th Ambassadors’ Conference in the capital Ankara, Çavuşoğlu said that officials from Turkey, Russia, and Iran met in Moscow Friday in preparation for the summit.

“We have agreed to invite the U.S. to the talks. We will invite them. The U.S. will be in Astana. We do not deny the contribution and role of the U.S,” Çavuşoğlu said.

U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner said Friday that the U.S. has not been invited to the talks.

Negotiations to reach a resolution to the six-year war in Syria are due to begin in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana between the Syrian regime and opposition.

Following last month’s Syria cease-fire deal, the Astana meeting comes as part of ongoing efforts by Turkey and Russia to promote a political solution in war-torn Syria.

Syria has been locked in a devastating civil war since early 2011, when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests – which erupted as part of the Arab Spring uprisings – with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, hundreds of thousands of people are believed to have been killed and millions more displaced by the conflict.