US accuses Assad of endangering ‘cessation of hostilities’

The office of UN envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura said, following consultations with the UN Security Council, that there will be no new round of negotiations regarding the Syria conflict for at least two to three weeks.

According to a statement, de Mistura wants to see progress on the ground, particularly relating to the cessation of hostilities and humanitarian access to populated territories under siege before talks would resume, in a bid to advance a political solution to the conflict.

Following the UN Security Council consultations on the matter, United States ambassador to the UN Samantha Power accused the Syrian Assad regime of bearing responsibility of endangering the cessation of hostilities and called on Russia to press President Bashar Assad to abide by the agreements reached and halt all hostilities immediately. “I’ve just come from the Security Council consultations on the situation in Syria where special envoy de Mistura was the briefer by video conference. He expressed his continued frustration with insufficient humanitarian access, the serious dangers to the cessation of hostilities, and the need for real progress on the political talks. The United States, of course, shares these frustrations and concerns. On the cessation of hostilities, it is clear that violence has increased in the past month and is nearing pre-cessation of hostilities levels. It is also clear that the dangers to the cessation are largely being driven by the Syrian regime and its allies and attacks on civilians. Russia has a special responsibility to press the Assad regime to abide by the cessation of the hostilities and end its bombardment and siege of innocent Syrian civilians,” Power said.