- POSTED: 21 Jan 2014 00:16
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Syria's opposition National Coalition will not attend peace talks in Switzerland beginning Wednesday if an invitation to Iran is not withdrawn by Monday night, a Coalition member told AFP.
BEIRUT: Syria's opposition National Coalition will not attend peace talks in Switzerland beginning Wednesday if an invitation to Iran is not withdrawn by Monday night, a Coalition member told AFP.
"By 1900 GMT, they have to confirm that Iran is not invited to the conference or we will not attend," said Hadi AlBahra, insisting Iran's participation at the talks was "impossible".
The Coalition issued a statement shortly afterwards reiterating the deadline.
It said it would only attend if Iran either met a series of conditions or the United Nations withdrew the invitation to Tehran.
Iran has already said it will not agree to any preconditions on its attendance at the talks set to begin in the Swiss town of Montreux on Wednesday.
The Coalition demanded Iran "withdraw all troops and militias from Syria," commit to the terms of the Geneva I communique and announce "a positive commitment in Geneva II".
"In case of failure to obtain the pledge, we ask the (UN) Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon to rescind/withdraw its invitation to Iran," the Coalition said.
"Otherwise, the Syrian Coalition will not be able to attend the Geneva II conference."
This week's peace talks between the Syrian regime and opposition are meant to build on the so-called Geneva communique drawn up in 2012, which called for a transitional government, without explicitly calling for President Bashar al-Assad to step down.