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  • » 04/20/2012, 00.00

    SYRIA

    Syria's ceasefire "very fragile"



    China backs observers' mission called for by agreement reached by Syria and the United Nations. Reports of air strikes and shelling continue however. The United States call for tighter sanctions, including an arms embargo.

    Beirut (AsiaNews) - "It's a very fragile ceasefire," said Kofi Annan's spokesman as he spoke about the deal brokered last Tuesday in Damascus. Reports on the ground in fact confirm that clashes continue in various parts of Syria. Meanwhile, shelling by government forces was reported in Homs and surrounding areas (pictured). Protests were also reported in Damascus suburbs, Aleppo province, and the eastern city of Raqqa.

    Yesterday, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said that Damascus had not yet honoured the ceasefire plan proposed by UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan.

    "The past few days, in particular, have brought reports of renewed and escalating violence," he said. In addition, Syrian authorities have not yet pulled their troops and weapons out of the cities.

    In view of the situation, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton stopped short of calling for outside military intervention at a meeting of the Friends of Syria group in Paris on Thursday but insisted instead on new sanctions and a total arms embargo on Syria.

    "We need to start moving very vigorously in the Security Council for a Chapter 7 sanctions resolution," she said, "including travel, financial sanctions, an arms embargo, and the pressure that that will give us on the regime to push for compliance with Kofi Annan's six-point plan".

    China backs the ceasefire plan. A spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry in Beijing said that it is willing to send observers to join the advance team.

    The ceasefire deal includes in fact the deployment of 300 unarmed observers sent on a three-month mission to work across the country unimpeded.

     

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    See also

    12/04/2012 SYRIA
    Ceasefire between regime and rebels appears to be holding
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    31/10/2013 SYRIA
    As OPCW destroys chemical plants, Assad insists only Syrians can "decide on Syria's future"
    In his meeting with UN-Arab League Special Envoy Lakdhar Brahimi, the Syrian President slams foreign powers for providing weapons to the rebels. The tête-à-tête took place yesterday in Damascus ahead of the Geneva Conference, scheduled for late November. The OPCW announces the destruction of all the 20 plants that made sarin gas for chemical weapons.

    17/04/2012 SYRIA
    As rebels and regime violate the ceasefire, Kofi Annan's plan collapses
    Speaking to AsiaNews, sources describe a chaotic, unstable and dangerous situation. Extremists who flocked to Syria only to kill are among the opposition. UN-Arab League observers begin their mission.

    20/07/2017 18:01:00 SYRIA – UNITED NATIONS
    FAO: Wheat harvest in Syria improving, but still less than half of prewar production

    This year's harvest is 1.8 million tonnes, up 12 per cent over last. Some 6.9 million people are food insecure, another 5.6 million are at risk without monthly aid. Deir-ez-Zor and Ar-Raqqa are the most at risk.



    17/07/2012 SYRIA
    As fighting reaches Damascus, apostolic nuncio expects dark days ahead
    Mgr Mario Zenari describes the tensions residents face. For the past two days, the capital has been the scene of fighting between rebels and the Republican Guard, with 64 dead. The witness of nuns from Azeir monastery (Homs) is a sign of hope for Christians, Alawis and Sunnis.



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