US and Russia "determined" to make Syria ceasefire agreement work

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UN Deputy Special Envoy for Syria Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy briefing journalists in Geneva on Thursday. Photo: UN Photo/Daniel Johnson

Russia and the United States are determined to make their Syria ceasefire agreement work, while direct peace talks could happen within weeks, a senior UN negotiator announced on Thursday.

Speaking to journalists in Geneva, UN Deputy Special Envoy for Syria, Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy, also confirmed that the superpowers planned to meet in New York in an effort to stop the fighting.

Daniel Johnson has more.

Just back from New York, where heads of state are gathered for the UN General Assembly, Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy told journalists in Geneva that "today could be an important day" for Syria.

The UN Deputy Special Envoy for Syria explained that this is because the United States and Russia were still intent on making their ceasefire plan work, and that they would continue to co-chair meetings of the International Syria Support Group – or ISSG.

"I would like to convey to you the feeling that existed in the ISSG: it is clear that the co-chairs are determined to make their agreement work. That is very clear."

The UN negotiator's comments come in the wake of a deadly attack on an aid convoy in north-west Aleppo on Monday, which forced the organization to suspend all humanitarian deliveries in Syria.

Ramzy also indicated that the UN Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, would continue to seek face-to-face negotiations between parties, "hopefully in the next few weeks"

At Ramzy's side in Geneva, Special Adviser to the UN Syria Envoy, Jan Egeland, said he hoped to see aid delivered to Madamiyet, and in coming days to other besieged locations including the so-called four towns of Az Zabdani, Madaya, Foah and Kafraya.

Daniel Johnson, United Nations, Geneva

Duration: 1’18″


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