GENEVA — The top deputy for the U.N. Syria envoy is shuttling between Geneva hotels to meet with envoys from the government delegation and opposition groups ahead of the formal start of a fifth round of U.N.-mediatedpeace talks.

The United Nations Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, issued a statement on Thursday noting that all parties have arrived for the intra-Syria talks in Geneva.

His deputy, Ramzy Ramzy, kicked off the day meeting with the delegation of the Syrian government. He is also expected to meet with opposition delegates for informal consultations.

De Mistura will formally start the talks Friday after returning from discussions with regional and international stakeholders in the Syrian conflict.

The Geneva talks are expected to tackle the issues of governance, a new constitution, elections and terrorism.