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Saturday, September 17, 2016

U.S. No cooperation with Russia until Syria aid flows

The United States made clear on Friday it will not set up a planned joint U.S.-Russian military coordination cell in Syria until regime forces there allow aid into besieged cities, AFP reported.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and condemned "repeated and unacceptable delays of humanitarian aid," a spokesman said.

A ceasefire was declared in Syria's five-year-old civil war on Monday, two days after Kerry and Lavrov signed a deal in Geneva to pressure both sides to hold their fire. It was extended by 48 hours on Thursday.

Under the pact, Russia was to restrain President Bashar Al-Assad's regime while Washington leans on the rebel groups opposing him, and both sides agree violence has reduced.

If the truce lasts seven days and humanitarian access is granted, Russia and the United States are to work together to target the extremist Islamic State (ISIS) and Al-Nusra front. READ MORE