: AFP: Efforts to save Syrian truce shift to Moscow

11:07 May. 3, 2016

AFP: Efforts to save Syrian truce shift to Moscow

Men look at damaged buildings after airstrikes hit Aleppo, Syria, April 28, 2016 (AP Photo)

The U.S. and Russia have agreed to boost the number of Geneva-based ceasefire monitors

Efforts to salvage Syria's ceasefire were to shift to Moscow on Tuesday (May 3) as the country's second city of Aleppo reeled from a week of fighting that killed hundreds of civilians.

Watch also Russia, Syrian army pound rebels ahead of fighting halt

A day after US Secretary of State John Kerry launched a desperate push in Geneva to breathe life into the stuttering truce, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was to meet the UN envoy Staffan de Mistura in the Russian capital.

The two-month old ceasefire brokered by the United States and Russia is under severe threat and Kerry said on Monday that Washington and Moscow had made progress in trying to contain the bloodshed.

Kerry gave some of his most downbeat comments yet after meeting de Mistura in Geneva, saying the conflict was "in many ways out of control and deeply disturbing".

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The US and Russia have agreed to bolster the number of Geneva-based ceasefire monitors, Kerry told reporters, pledging to work "in the next hours" to rein in violence on the ground.

In and around Aleppo, a week of fighting has killed more than 250 people.

Kerry accused President Bashar al-Assad's regime of deliberately targeting three clinics and a major hospital last week.

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"The attack on this hospital is unconscionable," he said. "And it has to stop."

There was a relative lull in the unrest later Monday, allowing some residents to venture out into the streets, AFP's correspondents in Aleppo said, with some even opening up shops.

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