01/11/2013 05:10 EST | Updated 03/12/2013 05:12 EDT

International envoy Brahimi holds talks on Syria with top Russian, US officials

GENEVA - International envoy Lakhdar Brahimi is holding private meetings in Geneva with senior Russian and U.S. officials aiming to find a political solution to the crisis in Syria.

Brahimi arrived Friday morning at the U.N.'s European headquarters for a meeting with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov and U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns.

This will be the second time the three diplomats have met privately in recent weeks.

The conflict began in March 2011 with peaceful protests against the Assad family dynasty, but the uprising soon transformed into a civil war.

At least 60,000 people have been killed in the war, according to a recent U.N. estimate, and all international efforts so far to bring about a peaceful transition have failed.