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UN council fails to back appeal for Syria humanitarian truce

AFP  |  United Nations 

The has failed to back an appeal from UN aid officials for a month- long humanitarian ceasefire in Syria, where four days of government raids have killed scores of civilians.

dismissed the proposal as unrealistic but and Sweden, which requested the meeting, said they were considering other ways to address the worsening humanitarian crisis in the war-wracked country.

Asked about the one-month pause, Russian said, "That is not realistic."

"We would like to see a ceasefire, the end of the war, but the terrorists, I am not sure, are in agreement," he told reporters.

has repeatedly blocked action in the council that would target its ally in

The UN for Syria, Panos Moumtzis, on Tuesday called for the month-long ceasefire to reach civilians in need as fighting in Eastern Ghouta and Idlib escalated.

During the closed-door session, council members heard UN appeal again for the pause in fighting to allow safe access to civilians, diplomats said.

But there was no agreement on a council statement, which requires consensus among the 15 members, diplomats said.

French called for a strong response from the council ahead of the meeting, appealing for an immediate ceasefire and unhindered access for aid workers.

"Eastern Ghouta is experiencing a Middle Ages-style siege. That is totally unacceptable," Delattre told reporters.

"In Syria, we are now back to the darkest period of this conflict, with the highest death toll among civilians over the last year," he deplored.

The demanded an end to the air strikes, with the State Department saying in Washington: "These attacks must end now."

UN aid officials accuse the of blocking all aid convoys to besieged areas since January.

More than 13.1 million Syrians are in need of humanitarian aid, including 6.1 million who have been displaced within the country during the nearly seven-year war.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, February 09 2018. 05:40 IST