The Back Channel

Diplomats focus on humanitarian aid first, Syria peace talks second

Friday, Feb. 5, 2016 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

After Syria peace talks in Geneva suspended, diplomats look to world powers to agree on aid access and humanitarian deliverables at a meeting of the International Syria Support Group in Munich on Feb. 11 to try to revive a diplomatic process.

Syrian opposition finally agrees to join Geneva talks

Monday, Feb. 1, 2016 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

The Syrian opposition said Feb. 1 it would join the Syria peace talks in Geneva to press for an end to sieges and the shelling of civilians.

Syria talk invites go out … who’s in and who’s out?

Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2016 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura issued invitations Jan. 26 to new Syria peace talks in Geneva beginning Jan. 29 that could last six months, while acknowledging that the relaunched peace effort is going to be uphill.

US lets two Iran banks off UN sanctions list

Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

The United States, in a confidence-building gesture with Iran, did not block a Venezuelan request to delist two Iranian banks from a UN Security Council sanctions list.

Obama, Rouhani hail diplomacy as Americans fly home

Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016 | Barbara Slavin, Washington Correspondent

President Barack Obama heralds his administration’s multichannel diplomacy with Iran for freeing detained Americans and implementing the nuclear deal and says there is an "opportunity" to pursue a new path with Iran.

Iran frees five Americans as nuclear deal goes into effect

Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Iran has released five American prisoners including Washington Post correspondent Jason Rezaian, in an apparent swap with Iranians jailed in the United States for sanctions violations.

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