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Syria peace talks in peril before they even start

High Negotiations Committee (HNC) spokesman Riyad Naasan Agha of Syria's main opposition body (R back) briefs the press upon his arrival in GenevaThe future of the biggest push to date to end Syria’s brutal civil war looked highly uncertain Sunday with the main opposition group threatening to walk away before planned peace talks even begin in earnest. Representatives from the umbrella body for mainstream opposition groups, who arrived in Geneva late Saturday, are refusing for now to enter the hoped-for talks with President Bashar al-Assad’s government. The High Negotiations Committee (HNC), set to meet with UN envoy Staffan de Mistura on Sunday, are demanding that humanitarian aid first gets through to besieged towns, that bombing of civilians ceases and that hundreds of prisoners are released.

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