Medical evacuations stall, as Syria holds referendum

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Medical evacuations stall, as Syria holds referendum

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The Red Cross says it is still unable to evacuate citizens from the embattled Baba Amro district of Homs.

Negotiations with Syrian authorities and opposition fighters have failed to deliver any concrete results.

Four western journalists, two of them wounded, are still stuck in Baba Amro.

Despite the bloodshed, President Bashar al-Assad plans to hold a referendum on a new constitution today, which he claims will pave the way for a multi-party election within three months.

It has been dismissed by the opposition as a charade. Turkey is also not convinced.

Ahmet Davutoglu, Turkish foreign minister, asked: “How can we expect a fair referendum and free elections in a country where even journalists are being killed?” As Syrian television promoted the referendum, activists leading the revolt against four decades of Assad family rule called for it to be boycotted.

They said they will attempt to hold protests near polling centres and burn copies of the new constitution.