Vi­o­la­tions put Syria deal in the bal­ance

7 Days in Dubai - - GLOBAL NEWS -

Syria’s week-long cease­fire, bro­kered by the United States and Rus­sia, is on the brink of col­lapse amid re­peated vi­o­la­tions and with no aid de­liv­er­ies to the be­sieged rebel-held part of the north­ern city of Aleppo, a key point in the agree­ment.

The un­cer­tainty cast doubts the plan to set up a co­or­di­na­tion cen­tre that would plan strikes against mil­i­tants in the coun­try.

The two sides, which bro­kered the truce ear­lier this month, had said that if it holds for seven days, it would be fol­lowed by the es­tab­lish­ment of a Joint Im­ple­men­ta­tion Cen­tre for both coun­tries to co­or­di­nate the tar­get­ing of ISIS and Al Qaeda-linked mil­i­tants.

As vi­o­la­tions mount, a se­nior Syr­ian op­po­si­tion of­fi­cial de­clared the cease­fire “clin­i­cally dead”, adding that gov­ern­ment forces have vi­o­lated the truce all over the coun­try.

For its part, the Syr­ian army, which en­dorsed the US-Rus­sia deal, had said in a state­ment that the cease­fire would end at mid­night on Sun­day.

Da­m­as­cus has since an­nounced no ex­ten­sions of the truce.

On Sun­day, rebel-held parts of Aleppo were tar­geted in aerial at­tacks for the first time since the truce went into ef­fect, leav­ing a woman dead and sev­eral peo­ple wounded, ac­cord­ing to op­po­si­tion ac­tivists. A he­li­copter at­tack on the south­ern vil­lage of Dael killed at least eight peo­ple, ac­tivists said.

It was not clear who car­ried out the at­tacks.

Yes­ter­day, the op­po­si­tion re­ported 254 vi­o­la­tions by gov­ern­ment forces and their al­lies since the truce started on Septem­ber 12. Syr­ian state me­dia said there were 32 vi­o­la­tions by rebels on Sun­day alone.

Ge­orge Sabra, of the op­po­si­tion High Ne­go­ti­a­tions Com­mit­tee, said that the truce has been re­peat­edly vi­o­lated and did not suc­ceed in its main ob­jec­tive — open­ing roads for aid to en­ter be­sieged rebel-held ar­eas.

“Hun­dreds of thou­sands of peo­ple in Aleppo are wait­ing for this truce to al­low aid to en­ter the city,” he said, adding that there are aid trucks still wait­ing on the Turkey-Syria bor­der. “I be­lieve that the truce is clin­i­cally dead.”

In Turkey, Pres­i­dent Re­cep Tayyip Er­do­gan an­nounced a new push by Turk­ish forces and Syr­ian rebels aimed at cap­tur­ing a town held by ISIS.

Er­do­gan said the Syr­ian op­po­si­tion forces, backed by Turk­ish troops and tanks, are de­ter­mined to ad­vance to­ward al-Bab to clear the re­gion of ter­ror threats. The of­fen­sive, he said, will last un­til the area “is no longer a threat” to Turkey.

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