The Latest: UN Syria envoy plans 2 rounds of talks

The Latest on Syria talks (all times local):

2:30 p.m.

The United Nations' Syria envoy says he plans to host two rounds of peace talks in Geneva next month between President Bashar Assad's government and the weakened opposition.

The talks come as Syria-friendly Russia takes an increasing diplomatic role in efforts to end the 6-1/2-year war.

Staffan de Mistura made the comments Wednesday while addressing a meeting of the main Syrian opposition groups in the Saudi capital, Riyadh. He also urged them to come together in a "strong and creative" opposition for the talks.

Alluding to the U.N.-mediated negotiations, de Mistura says: "We want to show and we want to show through you that this is the way the future of Syria can be decided."


11:45 a.m.

The United Nations envoy for Syria has urged Syrian opposition groups at the opening of a meeting hosted in the Saudi capital to come up with a united delegation for the Geneva talks later this month.

Staffan de Mistura spoke Wednesday at the opening of the three-day meeting for the Syrian opposition in Riyadh. Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said in opening remarks that the opposition meeting comes amid an international consensus to reach a resolution for the six-year conflict.

The meeting of the notoriously fragmented opposition is intended to come up with a unified vision ahead of the new round of peace talks in Geneva on Nov. 28.

Russia is also hosting a meeting expected to bring the opposition and Syrian government together in early December.