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Syria peace talks postponed to March 9: UN

Resumption of the talks delayed by two days to 'address logistical and practical matters', says UN envoy
UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura last month in Geneva (AFP)

Peace talks aimed at ending the conflict in Syria will resume in Geneva on 9 March, UN envoy Staffan de Mistura's office said on Tuesday, announcing a two-day postponement. 

"The 7th of March 2016 was initially set as the target date for the resumption of peace talks," but a short delay was needed "to allow adequate time to address logistical and practical matters," de Mistura's office said in a statement. 

"Mr. de Mistura looks forward to Syrian participants’ engagement in serious discussions," the statement added. 

The first round of talks which began early last month was cut short amid intensifying Russian airstrikes in Syria in support of President Bashar al-Assad's forces.

Warring parties, excluding the Islamic State group and the al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front, have agreed to a truce brokered by the US and Russia, which the United Nations has said is broadly holding despite isolated incidents of fighting. 

The UN has said an extended commitment to the ceasefire by all sides would raise hope of the talks succeeding, after repeated diplomatic efforts to end the conflict have failed. 

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