16:31 GMT16 May 2021
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    German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said that Germany calls on the Syrian regime to stop attacks against the civilian population.

    Position of Syrian army at village of Salma and city of Zabadani
    © Sputnik / Michael Alaeddin
    BERLIN (Sputnik) — German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier urged on Friday all conflicting sides in Syria's civil war to refrain from hostilities in order to preserve the impending ceasefire.

    "We call on the Syrian regime to stop attacks against the civilian population. All sides are urged to refrain from steps that could threaten the ceasefire just ahead of its implementation," Steinmeier said.

    The ceasefire between Syria's moderate opposition and the Syrian government forces is scheduled to come into effect on Saturday, at midnight Damascus time.

    All key groups and individuals participating in the conflict have announced their readiness to observe the ceasefire, according to Steinmeier.

    Earlier on Friday, the Riyadh-formed Syrian opposition's High Negotiations Committee (HNC) said that over 100 armed groups had agreed to observe the ceasefire.

    On Monday, Moscow and Washington announced that they had agreed on a cessation of hostilities in Syria, in order to ensure humanitarian aid reaches besieged areas, and to better delineate terrorist-held territory in the country.

    Steinmeier also noted the encouraging progress made in Syria since the February 12 International Syria Support Group (ISSG) meeting in Munich, which became the prelude to the later ceasefire agreement. Over recent days, access was finally gained to some 120,000 people trapped in besieged locations across Syria, the minister said.

    The first UN World Food Programme (WFP) aid airdrop into the besieged eastern Syrian city of Deir ez-Zor took place on Thursday. While WFP admitted that all of the pallets with aid missed their targets, it added that necessary adjustments to the operation were being carried out.


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    ceasefire, Syrian crisis, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Syria, Germany
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