Russia: Demands for regime change in Syria unhelpful

Published March 12th, 2012 - 03:52 GMT

Demands for a speedy regime change in Syria are only fueling the conflict in that country, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Monday. He made this comment during the Security Council session entitled "Situation in the Middle East: Challenges and Opportunities." Support for the opposition and appeals for military intervention from the outside will only widen the conflict in Syria. In this context, Mr. Lavrov called for a dialogue between the warring parties.

Meanwhile, the Syrian army bombed again on Monday the rebel city of Idleb (northwest) and its province, where people lack water and electricity, reported Syrian activists. At least 18 people, mostly soldiers, were killed Monday in violence across the country.

The military forces are in control of the entrances to Idleb, but other parts are still defended by the rebels. In the district of Dbeit, 20 bodies were found Sunday night, Rami Abdel Rahman, president of the Syrian Observatory of Human Rights told AFP. On Monday, at least four civilians were killed in the province of Idleb.

Elsewhere in the country, in the province of Homs (center), three civilians were killed. In the province of Hama (center), three soldiers were killed by rebels who repelled an assault on the town of Kalat-al Madiq, which came under heavy machine gun fire. In the city of Deraa, the cradle of protest in the south, three soldiers were also killed in an attack against a military vehicle. In the province of Raqa (North Central), three rebels and two air intelligence officers died in the town of Al-Tabka. Moreover, according to the official SANA news agency, a group of armed terrorist blew up a pipeline carrying oil from the city of Homs to Hama. The agency gave no further details.

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