U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said he is hopeful talks will be held next week on ending the war in Syria.
Speaking after a meeting with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in Paris, Kerry said the talks, scheduled for December 18 in New York, will depend on events in the coming week, including a Saudi-led conference of the Syrian opposition.
Saudi Arabia has taken the lead at bringing together Syrian groups opposed to both President Bashar al-Assad and Islamic State militants.
Last month, at Syria talks in Vienna, representatives of world powers, including the United States, Russia, Iran and the United Nations, laid out a broad plan for a political transition.
It would include bringing Syrian government and opposition groups into U.N.-mediated talks by January 1.
The world powers also voiced support for establishing a credible, inclusive government in Syria within six months, and free and fair elections within 18 months.
The plan also would include a process aimed at leading to an agreement on which elements of the Syrian opposition are terrorists.