U.N. proposes options for sending police to Burundi, government OKs 20

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has proposed sending between 20 and 3,000 police to Burundi, where political violence has been simmering for a year, but warned that the government signalled it would only accept 20 unarmed experts. In a report, seen by Reuters on Monday, Ban outlined three possible options for a police deployment to the small landlocked African state as requested by the 15-member U.N. Security Council in a resolution unanimously adopted earlier this month. Tit-for-tat attacks between President Pierre Nkurunziza’s security forces and his opponents have escalated since…

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Syrian rebels launch new battle, accuse U.N. envoy of bias

Syrian rebel groups launched a new offensive against government forces on Monday and some accused the United Nations of bias, imperilling peace talks already threatened by fighting. The opposition’s coordinator at the Geneva talks said it was unacceptable for negotiations to go on if the government and its allies pushed on with sieges and bombing civilian areas, echoing recent criticism of government offensives elsewhere. Both sides have accused one another of breaking a Feb. 27 partial truce deal, which does not include Islamic State or al Qaeda’s Nusra Front and…

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U.N. alarmed at attacks on Syria hospitals, schools; nearly 50 dead

People gather near what is said to be a hospital damaged by missile attacks in Azaz, Aleppo, Syria, February 15, 2016 in this still image taken from a video on a social media website. REUTERS/SOCIAL MEDIA WEBSITE VIA REUTERS United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday voiced alarm at reports of deadly attacks on Syrian schools and hospitals, including a medical center run by the humanitarian group Doctors Without Borders (MSF), a U.N. spokesman said. “The secretary-general is deeply concerned by reports of missile attacks on at least five medical…

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U.N. peace envoy to meet Syrian foreign minister – government official

U.N. Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura will hold talks with Syria’s foreign minister on Tuesday during a surprise visit to Damascus, a Syrian government official told Reuters. The official said the talks were a follow-up to the Munich meeting in which world powers agreed to a cessation of hostilities that would let humanitarian aid be delivered in Syria. The talks will include discussion of the resumption of peace talks set for Geneva on Feb. 25, including “procedural issues”, the official said on condition of anonymity.   [SOURCE:- Reauters]

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