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UN investigators: Syria ‘de-escalation’ has limited effect

Deal has largely failed to improve humanitarian access

Gulf News

Geneva: A UN investigative commission says the “de-escalation” agreement in Syria has reduced violence in only one of four zones included in the deal and has not led to greater humanitarian access.

The Independent International Commission of Inquiry told the UN Human Rights Council on Wednesday that fighting around the central province of Homs, near Damascus and in the southern city of Daraa has continued despite the deal brokered by Russia, Turkey and Iran in May.

Only in the northern Idlib province and western Aleppo has the violence been significantly reduced.

The chair of the commission, Paulo Sergio Pinheiro, says the “de-escalation zones” have yet to bring about any improvement in the delivery of humanitarian aid. He said some 600,000 people are trapped in besieged areas outside the four zones.