Delegates from more than a dozen nations meet in Vienna in a new bid to end Syria’s four-year civil war. Paul Chapman reports.
New bid to end Syria war
Video posted on a social media website purports to give some idea of life for civilians caught in Syria’s civil war.
These scenes are said to have been shot in Aleppo province during multiple air strikes.
Friday’s international talks involving more than a dozen nations are intended to find a way to end the four-year conflict.
The United Nations Secretary General says the U.S., Russia, Saudi Arabia, Iran and Turkey in particular need to put aside differences.
(SOUNDBITE)(English) U.N. SECRETARY GENERAL BAN KI-MOON SAYING:
“The longer they take their own national perspectives, the much more people will suffer and the whole world will suffer.”
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s already had a meeting with the foreign ministers of Russia, Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
Kerry was also due to meet Iran’s foreign minister ahead of Friday’s talks.
Iran’s now signalled it might be willing to drop its insistence that Syria’s president should stay in power.
That’s a key sticking point between the U.S and its Western and Gulf allies, and Moscow and its supporters who include Iran.
The European Union’s foreign affairs representative says it’s a milestone the meeting in Vienna is happening at all.
(SOUNDBITE)(English) FEDERICA MOGHERINI, EU HIGH REPRESENTATIVE FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS, SAYING:
“Already the fact that we are gathering in this format is really, basically, a breakthrough.”
In New York, doctors, medical students and other health care workers staged a ‘die-in’ to protest targeted killings of medical personnel in Syria.
The rally organisers say more than 650 such workers have been killed in strikes on medical facilities, mostly by Syrian government forces.
The U.S. on Thursday accused Russia of hitting a hospital during bombing raids.
The Medecins Sans Frontieres aid group says 12 hospitals in the north have been hit but didn’t say by whose forces.