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Russia, US Push for Ceasefire and Increased Aid in Syria

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and US Secretary of State John Kerry called for a partial ceasefire in Syria and an increase in the flow of international aid to the embattled nation during a meeting in Paris on Monday.

MOSCOW, January 13 (RIA Novosti) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and US Secretary of State John Kerry called for a partial ceasefire in Syria and an increase in the flow of international aid to the embattled nation during a meeting in Paris on Monday.

“We talked today about the possibility of trying to encourage a ceasefire. Maybe a localized ceasefire in Aleppo,” Kerry told journalists after the talks.

The Russian and US foreign ministers were meeting with Lakhdar Brahimi, the UN and Arab League special envoy for Syria, to discuss preparations for the upcoming Syria peace talks due to be held in Switzerland on January 22.

Lavrov said the delivery of humanitarian aid to Syria was “above all disrupted by insurgents. They have killed 32 international aid workers so far.”

Russia’s top diplomat said the Syrian government would guarantee the safety of an upcoming humanitarian aid convoy being sent to a Palestinian refugee camp.

“A few days ago an attempted delivery was made, but it was disrupted by militants who blocked the path of the humanitarian convoy,” Lavrov said, adding that Syria is prepared to discuss cooperation with the Red Cross.

Next week’s talks in Switzerland are to be attended by Russia, the United States, China, France, the UK and about 30 other countries in addition to representatives from the UN, the Arab League, the EU and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

More than 100,000 people have been killed and 9 million people displaced since fighting broke out in Syria between government troops and armed rebels in 2011, according to the UN.

 

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