The Latest: Russia says Syrians can choose federalization

The Latest on Syrian peace talks set to begin Monday (all times local):

12:15 p.m.

Russia's Foreign Minister says federalization is one possible option in Syria if it is the will of the Syrian people.

Sergey Lavrov said Monday that Russia will support whatever solution the Syrian government and the opposition devise to end the country's war, including "any form (of government) whatever it may be called: federalization, decentralization, unitary state."

Speaking after a joint briefing on Monday in Moscow with his Tunisian counterpart, Lavrov also said countries should not launch attacks against terrorists in Libya without first receiving permission from the U.N. Security Council.

Lavrov said discussions about equipping Tunisian special forces in their fight against terrorism are ongoing.


11:15 a.m.

The U.N. special envoy for Syria says a resumption of peace talks between government envoys and representatives of the opposition is a "moment of truth" and insists the "only Plan B available is return to war."

Staffan de Mistura spoke to reporters Monday moments before resuming "proximity talks" in Geneva, a month after suspending them in an upsurge in violence in Syria. The talks come as he said a "fragile" cease-fire has largely held since Feb. 27, and humanitarian aid deliveries have resumed in recent weeks.

Many observers say the peace talks are the best chance in years to end a war moving into its sixth year, leaving at least 250,000 people dead and forcing at least 11 million people to leave their homes — many abroad.