Parties In Syrian Conflict Urged To Restore Ceasefire

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday urged all parties to the Syrian conflict to end violence and restore the cessation of hostilities during his second day trip here for talks focusing on the Syrian situation.

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Ambulances of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) wait on the outskirts of the rebel-held town of Madaya in northern Damascus, capital of Syria, on April 20, 2016. (Xinhua/Ammar)
Ambulances of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) wait on the outskirts of the rebel-held town of Madaya in northern Damascus, capital of Syria, on April 20, 2016. (Xinhua/Ammar)

“We’re getting closer to a place of understanding. But we have some work to do, and that’s why we’re here,” he told reporters after meeting with Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir Monday morning in a Geneva hotel.

Ambulances of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) wait on the outskirts of the rebel-held town of Madaya in northern Damascus, capital of Syria, on April 20, 2016. (Xinhua/Ammar)
Ambulances of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) wait on the outskirts of the rebel-held town of Madaya in northern Damascus, capital of Syria, on April 20, 2016. (Xinhua/Ammar)

While answering questions, Kerry said that there were a lot of conversations taking place Sunday on how to separate al-Nusra from the opposition fighters and stop the fighting in Aleppo, adding that progresses had been made in this regard.

Speaking after meeting with the U.N. envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura, Kerry said that both the U.S. and Russia have agreed that there will be additional personnel stationed in Geneva around the clock to make sure there is more accountability and a better ability to enforce the cessation of hostilities on a day-to-day basis.

He added that both the Syrian government and the opposition have “contributed to this chaos”.

Kerry arrived in Geneva on Sunday for discussions with Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir, and UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura, in an urgent effort to reaffirm the cessation of hostilities nationwide in Syria and seek more support for a political transition.

In the previous talks with Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh on Sunday, Kerry said that they both wanted to emphasize the seriousness of the situation with respect to the cessation of hostilities.

“The United Nations Security Council resolution calls for a full countrywide cessation and also for all of the country to be accessible for humanitarian assistance, obviously, that hasn’t happened and isn’t happening,” he noted.

Over the past several days the US Secretary of State also called the related sides, including main Syrian opposition’s General Coordinator for the High Negotiations Committee, Riyad Hijab, expressing his deep concern about the deteriorating situation in Aleppo.

Kerry made clear that ending the violence in Aleppo and returning ultimately to a durable, nationwide cessation is a “top priority”.

Source: Xinhua

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