Syria Ceasefire Deal to Open Aid to Besieged Areas - Kerry
21:28 22.02.2016(updated 21:53 22.02.2016)
According to the US secretary of state, the ceasefire deal will permit the transportation of humanitarian supplies to besieged areas and promote a political end to the conflict.
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – The pending cessation of hostilities in Syria will hopefully permit the transportation of humanitarian supplies to areas cut off by the civil war and promote a political end to the conflict, US Secretary of State John Kerry said in a statement on Monday.
'If implemented and adhered to, this cessation will not only lead to a decline in violence, but also continue to expand the delivery of urgently needed humanitarian supplies to besieged areas and support a political transition to a government that is responsive to the desires of the Syrian people,' Kerry stated.
On Monday, Russia and the United States announced a draft of the ceasefire agreement that calls for cessation of hostilities to begin at midnight on Saturday.
Syria's main opposition group, the National Coalition of Syrian Revolution and opposition forces tentatively agreed to back the cessation of hostilities, with conditions.
A statement posted on the Coalition's website on Monday said group 'had agreed to the 'possibility' of a temporary truce, provided there were guarantees [President Bashar] Assad's allies including Russia would implement the ceasefire, lift sieges, release detainees and allow aid deliveries across the country.'
The agreement excludes the terrorist groups Daesh, also known as the Islamic State, the al-Qaida affiliate Nusra Front and other groups designated as terrorist by the United Nations.
Violence in Syria continued over the weekend, with Daesh claiming responsibility for terrorist attacks in Homs and Damascus that killed at least 140 people.
More than 250,000 people have died in Syria's civil war since fighting began in March 2011.
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