Syrian government and opposition to meet in Astana talks on Monday

Deep divisions remain over the fate of Assad and the shape of any transitional government [Getty Images]
Al-Jazeera – Key players in the war in Syria are due to meet on Monday in Astana to begin talks aimed at consolidating a nationwide ceasefire and potentially paving the way towards a political settlement.

The talks, organised by Russia, Turkey and Iran, come weeks into a countrywide ceasefire brokered by Moscow and Ankara that has largely held despite incidents of violence across the country.

The negotiations, expected to last several days, will bring together representatives from the armed opposition, along with delegates from the Syrian government, Russia, Turkey, Iran and the United Nations, and are to be followed by a UN-mediated meeting in Geneva on February 8.

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