Delegations Converge to Talk Syria's Future

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News,World,Syria

Delegates from the Syrian Opposition, the Syrian government, Russia, the United States and 36 other countries gather in Switzerland, for talks on forming a Syrian transition government. (Jan 21)

DURATION: 1:42

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SHOTLIST:

AP Television - Clients Only

Geneva, Switzerland 21 January, 2014

1. Wide view of US Secretary of State John Kerry walking off plane

2. Mid view of Syrian government delegation

3. Arrival view of Syrian opposition delegation

4. Mid view of Russian delegation leaving airport

AP Television - Clients Only

Istanbul, Turkey 21 January, 2014

5. Wide exterior of Istanbul airport

6. Mid view of security check point line

7. SOUNDBITE: Abdulahad Astepho, Syrian National Coalition:)

"I have kind of mixed feelings. We are going to go there and we will try to minimize the suffering of the Syrian people. This is the most important thing, I think, to do first of all."

AP Television - Clients Only

Turkey-Syrian border

8. Wide view of Syrian refugee camp

AP Television - Clients Only

Moscow, Russia 21 January, 2014

7. Wide view of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov sitting down for news conference

8. Cutaway - photographers

9. Cutaway - reporters

10. SOUNDBITE: (Russian) Sergei Lavrov, Russian Foreign Minister:

"This is, of course, a mistake, and I said about this before. But there is no catastrophe. The issue at stake is a one-day event on January 22, tomorrow, to which about 40 foreign ministers have been invited, representing various states, including from the most distant regions, like Latin America and East Asia, but, despite the largely ceremonial nature of the event, the absence of Iran in the list of 40 countries cannot but raise questions."

AP Television - Clients Only

Geneva, Switzerland 21 January 2014

11. Opposition delegation leaving airplane

AP Television - Clients Only

Washington, DC 20 January, 2014

12. SOUNDBITE: (English) Alireza Nader, Mideast Analyst - Rand:

"And I have to say the US government faces a very tough situation here because it has to keep its partners in the Middle East happy."

AP Television - Clients Only

Geneva, Switzerland 21 January 2014

13. Members of US delegation arriving at hotel

SCRIPT:

(VOICE OVER)

AN INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE TO END THE SYRIAN CIVIL WAR IS UNDERWAY.

THE US DELEGATION TO THE SO-CALLED GENEVA II TALKS ARRIVED IN SWITZERLAND TUESDAY AFTERNOON.

DELEGATIONS FROM, THE SYRIA GOVERNMENT, THE SYRIAN OPPOSITION AND RUSSIA ARRIVED EARLIER.

DELEGATES HUSTLED TO SMOOTH OUT LAST-MINUTE HANG-UPS FOR THIS WEEK'S PEACE CONFERENCE ON SYRIA.

THE GOAL IS TO SET IN MOTION A TRANSITIONAL SYRIAN GOVERNMENT THAT WOULD HOLD DEMOCRATIC ELECTIONS.

(SOUNDBITE: Abdulahad Astepho, Syrian National Coalition:)

"I have kind of mixed feelings. We are going to go there and we will try to minimize the suffering of the Syrian people. This is the most important thing, I think, to do first of all."

DELEGATES ARE CONVERGING ON THE SWISS RESORT TOWN OF MONTREAUX.

THE TALKS MAY BE OVERSHADOWED BY A DECISION TO WITHDRAW THE United nations INVITATION TO THE IRANIANS TO ATTEND THE CONFERENCE.

IRAN'S ROLE HAS INFURIATED SYRIA'S OPPOSITION FORCES, WHICH ACCUSE TEHRAN OF IN ESSENCE INVADING THEIR COUNTRY.

BEFORE LEAVING MOSCOW, RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SERGEI LAVROV CALLED WITHDRAWN INVITATION A MISTAKE.

(SOUNDBITE: (RUSSIAN)Sergey Lavrov, Russian Foreign Minister:)

(VOICE OF TRANSLATOR)

"This is, of course, a mistake, and I said about this before. But there is no catastrophe. The issue at stake is a one-day event on January 22, tomorrow, to which about 40 foreign ministers have been invited, representing various states, including from the most distant regions, like Latin America and East Asia, but, despite the largely ceremonial nature of the event, the absence of Iran in the list of 40 countries cannot but raise questions."

(VOICE OVER)

THE DETERMINATION TO HOLD TALKS REFLECTS THE URGENCY FELT BY THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY TO FIND A POLITICAL SOLUTION TO END THE CIVIL WAR.

BUT, ANY POLITICAL RESOLUTION MAY TAKE MONTHS OF TALKS.

(SOUNDBITE: Aliezar Nadar, Iran Analyst - RAND)

"I have to say the US government faces a very tough situation here because it has to keep its partners in the Middle East happy, specifically Saudi Arabia, but Turkey as well. It has to get the opposition to come to the table, and the Syrian regime, as well. But realistically, it has to include Iran one way or another. And, these goals appear to me to be contradictory or not easily achieved."

THE FIRST FACE TO FACE TALKS BETWEEN THE SYRIAN GOVERNMENT AND THE SYRIAN OPPOSITION START FRIDAY.

Tom Ritchie, Associated Press

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