2 UN observers stationed in Syria's Homs on Saturday: spokesman
The spokesman of the UN advance team of observers said here Saturday that two observers have stationed in the central Homs province so far in order to monitor the implementation of the UN-backed cease-fire in the conflict-torn Syrian province, Xinhua reported.
Meeraj Singh, a member of the advance team and the media spokesman, told reporters that the advance team toured and walked around the city of Homs and talked to people there.
He said the team's visit is part of the main mandate of the advance team, which is to establish liaison between all parties and to prepare for the UN supervision mission in Syria as sanctioned by the Security Council.
He said the team met with local authorities and "with all the parties," adding "it was a daylong visit in Homs ... and at the end of the visit, what has been done is that two UN military observers from the advance team have now been deployed in Homs as of this evening."
"We are expecting more observers to arrive and join the team," Singh added.
The spokesman refused to go into details about who specifically the observers have met, saying: "that's a matter for the advance team to report to the joint UN envoy and to the UN headquarters."
"At this time, the team has eight military observers and we are expecting more members to join in the next few days," he said.
Syria has accepted a UN-backed cease-fire that aims at solving the crisis politically, and an advance team of international observers set foot in Syria last week to monitor the truce. Since their arrival, violence has to some extent declined, but still, attacks and deaths are reported on daily bases.
The team has toured several Syrian areas, such as southern Daraa province, the birthplace of the unrest, some suburbs of the capital Damascus. On Saturday, they visited the central Homs province, which has emerged as a main battleground between armed rebels and government forces.