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Churkin: Russia’s embassy in Syria involved in efforts to settle situation in Homs

April 18, 2014, 8:05 UTC+3 UNITED NATIONS
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UNITED NATIONS, April 18 /ITAR-TASS/. Russia’s embassy in Syria is taking part in efforts to regulate the situation in the Western Syrian city of Homs, where fierce fighting between the government army and opposition militants resumed in recent days, Russia’s ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin said.

“We are concerned about the situation in Homs, like in many other Syrian regions. I have spoken to our embassy in Damascus - they are participating in efforts to settle the situation in Homs. As far as I understand, discussions they take part in embrace more than just the situation in Homs,” Churkin told journalists on Thursday prior to a UN Security Council meeting.

During the meeting convened by France, the UN Security Council members will hear a report on the situation in Homs by UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Valerie Amos.

Joint UN and Arab League special envoy Lakhdar Brakhimi on Thursday expressed his deep regret at the frustration of the talks to evacuate the population from Homs’ ancient quarters.

As a result of an agreement reached between the government forces and armed bandit formations, some 1,400 people have been evacuated since the year start. About 1,300 people remain blocked in the city’s central part.

Fighting between Syrian government troops and militants has left over 100,000 people dead and displaced millions since its start in 2011, according to UN statistics.

An international peace conference on Syria, dubbed Geneva-2, organized by Russia and the United States, kicked off on January 22 in Montreux, Switzerland. The conference, designed to negotiate a solution to the Syrian crisis, brought no particular progress after two rounds in January and February 2014.

The parties to the Syrian conflict agreed to continue their discussions.

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