The head of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent has been shot dead on the road to Damascus.
The International Committee of the Red Cross says his vehicle was apparently targeted on the highway between the capital and Idlib – a focal point of the Syrian conflict.
It brings to at least seven the total number of people thought to have been killed on Wednesday across the country.
Syrian state television blamed “terrorists” for the death of Abd-al-Razzaq Jbeiro, saying that he’d been assassinated.
It comes as pressure increases on the United Nations to draft fresh sanctions against President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said his country, which holds a veto in the UN Security Council, remained opposed to sanctions and any possible military intervention.
“A fourth essential element of any (UN) resolution is the firm statement that this resolution may not be used to – cannot be interpreted to – justify any kind of outside military intervention in Syria,” said Sergei Lavrov.
Nonetheless, following the decision of the Gulf members of the Arab League to end their part in its monitoring mission, the UN Security Council could vote as early as next week on a draft resolution that calls on President Assad to stand down and transfer his powers to his deputy.