ICRC chief holds aid talks in Syria, as violence kills 23

ICRC chief holds aid talks in Syria, as violence kills 23

Violence in Syria killed 23 people on Tuesday, according to activists, as International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) chief Jakob Kellenberger held talks with Syrian officials to discuss ways of getting much-needed aid to restive areas, DPA reported.

Kellenberger met with Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem, Interior Minister Mohamad al-Shaar, and Minister of Health Wael al-Halki.

"Al-Moallem affirmed that Syria will continue to provide all that is needed to ensure the success of the ICRC's work and humanitarian mission in coordination with the Syrian Arab Red Crescent," state-run SANA news agency reported.

Humanitarian access is one condition of a six-point plan to end the conflict in Syria, proposed by UN-Arab League Envoy Kofi Annan and accepted last month by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Kellenberger, who is on his third visit to Syria, is also seeking access to detention centres where arrested protesters are jailed. He was due to visit the province of Daraa on Wednesday with ICRC teams, Syrian media reported.

Meanwhile, Amnesty International said 13 pupils, all male and aged between 17 and 19, were reportedly arrested on April 1 by men in plain clothes at a secondary school in the Daraya town, in the Damascus suburbs.

Family members told the London-based organization that, according to witnesses, the students were searched, beaten and verbally abused in front of other pupils before being taken away.

"There are thousands of people still in detention across Syria, many held incommunicado, in danger of being tortured, and without access to lawyers," said Ann Harrison, Amnesty International's Middle East and North Africa deputy director.

"Continuing to hold people in such conditions, and making new arrests like this, raises serious questions about how serious the government is about respecting its commitments under the Annan plan," Harrison added.

Shelling and clashes between army troops and rebels continued on Tuesday, despite promises by the government to start implementing Annan's peace plan, activists said.

The opposition Local Coordination Committees, which document violence on the ground across Syria, said 23 people were killed, mainly in the northern province of Idlib.

Troops were heavily deployed around the area of Zabadani at the outskirts of the capital Damascus, activists said.

"Dozens of tanks backed by troops were deployed at the Zabadani area, in a move seen by observers as a prelude to storm the area," Syrian Activist Haytham al-Abdullah told dpa from the region.

Annan said on Monday that al-Assad had agreed to "immediately" start pulling troops out of protest cities and to complete a troop and heavy weapon withdrawal by April 10, US ambassador Susan Rice said after Annan briefed the UN Security Council.

Damascus had in turn demanded that the rebels stop the violence within the following 48 hours, she added.

The London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said fighting was raging in the southern province of Daraa, the birthplace of the one-year uprising against al-Assad. The clashes killed 12 people.

The Observatory said that troops burnt around seven houses in Dael and arrested dozens of civilians from the village.

Activists reported from Daraa that troops were storming bakeries and throwing bread on the floor, in a move aimed at starving people.

According to United Nations estimates, more than 9,000 people have died in the crackdown by al-Assad's government since March 2011.

SANA said Syrian troops foiled an infiltration attempt by insurgents from the Turkish border into Syria.

"One insurgent was killed in the clash but the rest managed to escape," the news agency reported.

A Western diplomat based in Damascus told dpa earlier that a UN team was scheduled to arrive in the country in 48 hours' time, to discuss sending between 150-200 UN monitors to supervise the ceasefire, in keeping Annan's peace plan.

Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned against placing too much emphasis on the April 10 deadline for the government to withdraw troops from restive areas.

"Ultimatums and deadlines rarely help in such a matter," Lavrov said during a visit to Armenia, according to Rosbalt news agency.

"We will work for the full execution of all six points of the plan put forward by Kofi Annan, and want to see effective and speedy responses to his suggestions," said Lavrov.

"But a starting point for our thinking is, that the same message should be sent by our Western partners and some Arab states to those armed groups who are letting blood on Syria's soil."

NCOC talks Marine Access Channels Project plans at Kazakh Kashagan field
NCOC talks Marine Access Channels Project plans at Kazakh Kashagan field
Kazakhstan’s KazTransOil to pay out dividends for 2020
Kazakhstan’s KazTransOil to pay out dividends for 2020
Kazakhstan’s KazTransOil decreases oil transshipment volumes in 1Q2021
Kazakhstan’s KazTransOil decreases oil transshipment volumes in 1Q2021
Loading Bars
Building of Azerbaijan’s Mud Volcanoes Tourism Complex to look like crater from above
Strengthening confidence-building measures in Azerbaijan-Armenia relations most important - Russian MFA
Georgia publishes budget performance report of 1Q2021
French lawyers arrive in Azerbaijan’s Ganja city, shelled by Armenia during war (PHOTO)
EIB financing helped to launch 60 satellites into space in 2020
EIB likely to support dev’t of renewable energy sphere in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens for Apr. 22
Azerbaijan confirms 2,047 more COVID-19 cases, 2,610 recoveries
Baku entitled to demand compensation from Armenia – Russian political analyst
IATA revises 2021 forecasts of world airlines losses
Azerbaijan to open tourism bureau in Israel
Belarus to supply components for Azerbaijan to assemble tractors in 2021
Several more Russian airlines allowed to operate flights to Baku
EIB exploring new project ideas to support digitalization across Eastern Partnership
SOCAR won't participate in sales of Antipinski Refinery’s property
NCOC talks Marine Access Channels Project plans at Kazakh Kashagan field
Azerbaijan's Aghdam in complete ruins - French lawyer
Uzbekistan’s Central Bank notes decrease of inflation rate
EAG working on assessing Turkmenistan's compliance with FATF recommendations
Uzbekistan GTL to buy pipes via tender
Kazakhstan’s KazTransOil to pay out dividends for 2020
Economy Ministry shares data on revenues from Azerbaijan's non-oil and gas sector
Turkmenistan elected member of Executive Board of UN Entity for Gender Equality, Empowerment of Women
Historical monuments in Azerbaijan's Aghdam vandalized - French criminal justice attorney
Kazakhstan’s KazTransOil decreases oil transshipment volumes in 1Q2021
Turkmenistan increases processing of agricultural products
Turkmen company exports tomatoes to Austria
Autoclave gas blocks plant construction launched in Kazakhstan's Turkestan
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan launches new communication facilities in 1Q2021
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan sees decrease in insurance portfolio for 1Q2021
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin price again falling
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan State Statistical Committee shares data on reconstruction of roads
Equinor to electrify over 35% of its total oil & gas output base by 2025
Russia leads among countries exporting goods to Azerbaijan
Iran’s CBI allocates funds for import of essential products
Output from Georgian Enguri HPP to increase after reconstruction - Director of Enguri HPP
Azerbaijan shares footage from Jabrayil's Shahverdili village (VIDEO)
Tesla opens Tel Aviv pop-up store
Russian airline receives permission to operate flights to Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan’s 3M2021 retail trade turnover of small business decreases
Number of bank accounts increases in Azerbaijan’s Nakhchivan
American Airlines loss narrows as travel demand picks up
Azerbaijan jointly with Russia sets up car manufacturing enterprise
Number of innovative companies worldwide grows
Kazakhstan boosts production of coal, some petroleum products
Swiss president heads for damage-control EU summit
Etihad Airways to stop operating Boeing 777-300ER jets this year
Installation of info boards on roads leading to Azerbaijan's liberated lands continues (VIDEO)
French human rights activists visiting Azerbaijan's Aghdam (PHOTO)
Georgia increases imports of tomatoes from Azerbaijan
Israeli airline to organize charter flights to Uzbekistan’s Tashkent
Kazakh president points out need to timely oversee major oil projects
US must choose between real ally Ankara and fictional history - Turkish presidential administration
Kazakhstan's trade with Italy down
Uzbekistan boosts import of electric cars
Azerbaijan names winner of auction for right to develop clay field in Goygol
Azerbaijan implementing "Smart Grid" concept in Sugovushan settlement (VIDEO)
Кazakh Electricity Grid Operating Company to buy spares via tender
Uzbekistan exports dried fruits to Malaysia through Turkey
Area of agricultural land in Iran equipped with modern irrigation systems growing
ADB introducing blockchain-based food tracking project in Azerbaijan
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for April 22
Azerbaijan publishes 1Q2021 data on lending to economy
Azerbaijan clears Sugovushan, Talyshkend from mines for construction of power transmission lines (PHOTO)
Several facilities put into operation in Iran's agricultural sector
Azerbaijani president, first lady attend ceremony of laying foundation of Mud Volcanoes Tourism Complex (PHOTO)
Georgia exports ignificant number of tractors, trucks to Azerbaijan
International revenue of Halliburton up amid increased software sales
Iran launches implementation of project on Cheshmeh Khosh oil field
Halliburton sees decrease in operating income
Azerbaijani banks' demand for foreign currency exponentially up
Turkmenistan increases production of vegetables, berries
Uzbek-Korean JV announces tender for consumables
Earth Day 2021: An unprecedented opportunity to restore our Earth
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan launches work on industrial projects in 1Q2021
Georgia reports 1,226 new cases of coronavirus for April 22
Turkey says France boosts import of domestic cars
Armenia commits provocations on state border with Azerbaijan
UAE's Universal Tubes and India's Tata in world's first blockchain-led trade finance for steel
Cargo transportation at Turkey's Adana airport reduces
Georgian wine exports to Azerbaijan see growth
Uzbekistan’s passenger cars production down in 1Q2021
Value of Turkey's grains, legumes export to Uzbekistan spikes in Mar.2021
Armenia planted plastic mines in liberated Sugovushan village - Azerbaijan's Mine Action Agency (VIDEO)
Russian GDP growth outlook downgraded to 2.9% for 2021
Inflation rate in Iran increases
Renault revenue falls for fifth quarter in a row
Turkey's 1Q2021 chemicals exports to Russia increase
Azerbaijani ministry appoints acting general director of Aztelekom LLC
Karabakh agreement - very important step in protection of human rights - German MFA
Georgian beer exports to Azerbaijan up
Turkmen carpet-making enterprise publishes production data for 1Q2021
ADB initiating program to support SMEs in Uzbekistan
Iran supplies agricultural machinery to farmers
Interconnections to increase Bulgaria’s gas market capacity by 10 bcm
Volume of loaded, unloaded cargo in Iranian ports decreases
Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan raises agricultural production y-o-y
Spanish CAF eyes establishing co-op with Uzbekistan in railway transport
UAE working on increasing export of fresh agricultural products from Uzbekistan
Construction of int'l airport in Azerbaijan's Fuzuli accelerating (VIDEO)
All news