UN, U.S. call for ceasefire in Syria

CNC
Added On May 3, 2016

The United Nations and the United States have called on all sides in Syria to cease hostilities, after violence escalated in the country's second biggest city Aleppo.
 
At least 250 civilians have been killed in the city for the past two weeks.
 
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday called on all warring sides in Syria to immediately recommit to the cessation of hostilities in the wake of an escalation of fighting around Aleppo.
 
SOUNDBITE(ENGLISH): STEPHANE DUJARRIC, UN Spokesperson
"The Secretary-General is profoundly concerned about the dangerous escalation of fighting in and around Aleppo and the intolerable suffering, counted in mounting deaths and destruction, it is causing among civilians. He called upon the warring Syrian sides to recommit immediately to the cessation of hostilities and to uphold their responsibility to protect civilians from the effects of the conflict."
 
Meanwhile in Geneva, talks are being held on how to salvage the ceasefire in Syria that began on February 27.
 
After meeting with his Jordanian and Saudi counterparts, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry reiterated that the ceasefire should be permanent.
 
SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) JOHN KERRY, US Secretary of State
“To reach agreement that cannot just re-implement the cessation but create a path forward for the cessation to hold so that there isn’t a one day of silence, or two days of silence, but an ongoing process that relieves the people of Syria from this devastation.”
 
Kerry said both the U.S. and Russia had agreed to send additional personnel to Geneva to discuss further actions.
 
SOUNDBITE (ENGLISH) JOHN KERRY, US Secretary of State
“We are working over these next hours intensely in order to try to restore the cessation of hostilities and at the same time to raise the level of accountability that will accompany the day to day process of implementing this ceasefire.”
 
Clashes have been reported to resume in Aleppo, when the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front unleashed repetitive large-scale attacks on Syrian military positions. 
 
The escalation of violence has threatened both a UN-backed peace process and the Russian-US brokered ceasefire.