UN Security Council endorses Syria ceasefire


Russia and Turkey announced the ceasefire this week, the third truce this year which seeks to end nearly six years of war in Syria.

The resolution approved on Saturday afternoon calls for the “rapid, safe and unhindered” delivery of humanitarian aid throughout the country. 

It also anticipates a meeting of the Syrian government and opposition representative in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana in late January.

These talks would be the first in nearly a year and would be mediated by Russia, Turkey and Iran.

Vladimir Putin

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Meanwhile on the ground in Syria, rebels warned that ceasefire violations by pro-government forces were threatening to undermine the two-day-old agreement.

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Bana Alabed (right) posing with a journalist after being evacuated from eastern Aleppo. Pic: Twitter / HadiAlabdallah

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Airstrikes pounded opposition-held villages and towns in the strategically-important Barada Valley outside Damascus, activists said.

That prompted a threat from the rebels to withdraw their compliance with the truce.

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Nearly 50,000 people died in the Syrian conflict during 2016, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which maintains networks of contacts on all sides of the war. 

More than 13,000 of them were civilians, according to the Observatory. Various estimates have put the war’s overall toll at around 400,000 dead.


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