Extend “day of silence” in Syria, says UN political chief

Jeffrey Feltman, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East (Syria)
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  • Consolidating and extending a short truce in Syria would be an “important step in the right direction,” the head of the UN’s Department of Political Affairs said on Wednesday.

    Jeffrey Feltman was speaking during a Security Council meeting on the political, security and humanitarian implications of recent developments there.

    Aerial bombardments and shelling over the past two weeks have killed scores of people in the city of Aleppo, and the international community has been working to get a Syria ceasefire deal “back on track.”

    Dianne Penn reports.

    Mr Feltman reported that the United States and Russia have concluded arrangements to extend the cessation of hostilities to Aleppo province and surrounding areas.

    The “day of silence” went into effect just after midnight on Wednesday, Damascus time.

    He said implementation has proven challenging, though it has led to an overall decrease in violence.

    “Consolidating and extending this agreement would be an important

    step in the right direction. We also hope that the earlier announced arrangements of “days of silence” in parts of Damascus and Rural Latakia will

    also be consolidated and we welcome the news that the “silence” has been extendedin the Eastern Ghouta suburb of Damascus for the next 48 hours. We need to put the cessation of hostilities back on track throughout the country. All should do in their fair share in this respect” 

    The cessation of hostilities is part of UN efforts to end more than five years of violence in Syria which has killed more than 250,000 people and forced nearly five million citizens to flee the country. 

    Dianne Penn, United Nations.

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