Topic: G20 Summit in St.Petersburg
US President Barack Obama and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, at the G20 Summit in St. Petersburg© Photo Photo host agency
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STRELNA, September 6 (RIA Novosti) – UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has urged G20 nation leaders at their summit in the Russian city of St. Petersburg to find a political solution to the “unprecedented” humanitarian crisis in Syria.
At a Friday morning meeting on the sidelines of the summit, the UN chief called on world leaders to convene as soon as possible the international conference on Syria in Geneva (known as “Geneva 2”), with the participation of senior Russian, US and UN officials.
Secretary General Ban said the humanitarian crisis in Syria is unprecedented in scale in recent history and the world should do everything to put an end to the sufferings of the Syrian people. He urged the participants to study the possible options for preventing further militarization of the conflict.
Russia and the US agreed in early May to hold an international conference aimed at facilitating a solution through political dialogue to the Syrian crisis. The US postponed the conference in late June.
US President Barack Obama recently asked the US Congress to support a limited military intervention in Syria because of the regime’s alleged use of chemical weapons, which the US claims killed over a thousand civilians in one attack last month. The Senate's Foreign Relations Committee approved a motion backing a military strike Wednesday, with a final vote expected next week after Congress reconvenes Monday.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Monday any US military strike against Syria would push the planned conference “a long way back.”
Moscow has repeatedly insisted that the United Nations is the only body that can legitimize military action in Syria.
Highlighting the human toll of the conflict, Ban said Thursday over 100,000 people have died and 4.25 million people have been displaced within the country, while at least another two million Syrians are now refugees abroad.
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