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UN chief urges Russia, Turkey to stabilize Syria’s Idlib ‘without delay’

Published: Updated:

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres appealed to Russia and Turkey on Tuesday “to stabilize the situation without delay” in northwest Syria.

“I am deeply concerned about the escalation of the fighting in Idlib, and the situation is especially dangerous given the involvement of an increased number of actors,” he told reporters.

“Even in the fight against terrorism, there needs to be full compliance with international human rights and humanitarian law.”

The UN Security Council is due to be briefed behind closed doors later on Tuesday on the situation in northwest Syria.

ALSO READ: Syria clashes kill 45 fighters: monitor

Meanwhile, clashes between pro-government forces and militant-led groups that control Syria’s northwest killed at least 55 combatants on Tuesday, a war monitor said.

The fighting flared on the edge of Hama province when militant group Hayat Tahrir al-Sham launched a dawn attack on regime positions, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

At least 14 pro-government forces died and 41 militants were killed in clashes, the Britain-based monitor said.

“Regime forces foiled the attack” before the fighting came to an end, Observatory head Rami Abdul Rahman told AFP. State news agency SANA also said the offensive had been thwarted.

Regime air strikes on northern Hama and neighboring Idlib had also paused for more than 24 hours, before resuming Tuesday following the latest bout of fighting, according to the monitor.

The bombardment killed one civilian in southern Idlib, it said.

(With AFP inputs)