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Bombers at Syria transit site ‘disguised’ as aid workers: UN

UN, Russia set for Syria meet without US

Published : Friday, 21 April, 2017 at 12:00 AM Count : 52

GENEVA, Apr 20 : The perpetrators of a bombing in Syria last weekend that killed more than 120 people had disguised themselves as aid workers and may have specifically targeted children, the UN said on Thursday.
The victims in the suicide car bombing Saturday at a rebel-held transit point where civilians were being evacuated included 68 children, and scores of others were injured.
"Someone pretending even to distribute aid and attracting the children produced that horrific explosion", UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura told reporters in Geneva.
The head of the UN's humanitarian taskforce for Syria, Jan Egeland, said at the same news conference that the assailants "disguised as a charity".
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack at the Rashidin transit point west of Aleppo, one of the deadliest episodes since the start of Syria's six-year civil war.
The blast, which tore through buses carrying civilians, also forced a pause in evacuations from the government-controlled towns of Fuaa and Kafraya.  
But the evacuations have resumed armed rebels were guarding civilians at the transit point on Thursday, according to AFP photographers at the scene.
Meanwhile, the UN's Syria envoy said on Thursday that he will hold talks with Russian officials next week but without the US present after previous plans for a trilateral meeting were "postponed".
UN peace mediator Staffan de Mistura said his meeting with Russia's deputy foreign minister Gennady Gatilov is set for Monday in Geneva.
"The trilateral meeting is not off the table, it is simply being postponed", de Mistura told reporters.
Asked why US President Donald Trump's representatives decided to skip the meeting, de Mistura said: "you should ask them, frankly."
Syrian regime supporter Moscow and opposition-backer Washington had been the key foreign powers shaping the UN's Syria peace process.
De Mistura has previously asked for more clarity from Trump's administration on its vision for the Syria talks. US officials have in recent weeks voiced commitment to support a negotiated solution to the conflict.    AFP







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