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U.N. envoy urges Obama, Putin to save Syria ceasefire, talks

U.N. mediator Staffan de Mistura attends a news conference after the conclusion of a round of meetings during the Syria Peace talks at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, April 28, 2016. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse
U.N. mediator Staffan de Mistura attends a news conference after the conclusion of a round of meetings during the Syria Peace talks at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, April 28, 2016. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

GENEVA (Reuters) – The United Nations mediator called on Thursday on the leaders of the Russia Federation and the United States to salvage the “barely alive” two-month ceasefire in Syria and revitalise the damaged peace process.

U.N. Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura spoke to reporters in Geneva after briefing the Security Council by video-link at the end of a two-week round of talks. The main opposition High Negotiations Committee pulled out of the formal talks a week ago, in protest of intensified fighting and slow aid deliveries.

Referring to the two powers, he said: “There is no reason that both of them which have been putting so much political capital in that success story and have a common interest in not seeing Syria ending up in another cycle of war should not be able to revitalise what they have created and which is still alive but barely.”

(Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay and Shadia Nasralla)

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