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Syria opposition row with UN envoy as last monitors leave

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Syria opposition row with UN envoy as last monitors leave


Leaders of the opposition Syrian National Council have cast doubt over the new UN peace envoy’s ability to find a solution to the conflict.

Fighting has continued on Monday, in Aleppo and also in Damascus, where government tanks have shelled a rebel-held suburb.

The last UN military observers have been leaving the Syrian capital after their four-month mission ended in failure. Instead of monitoring a ceasefire, they have looked on helplessly as the conflict escalated.

Visiting a refugee camp in Turkey, Syrian opposition leaders criticised the new UN peace envoy for failing to say President al-Assad should step down.

“Lakhdar Brahimi is a very successful diplomat. We all know him but the problem is not with his appointment, the problem is with reaching common sense to stop the killings in Syria and achieve what the Syrian people want. But honestly, it seems they don’t want to have common sense now,” said the SNC’s leader Abdulbaset Sieda.

Brahimi accused the SNC of misinterpreting his comments and called on it to apologise.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu says his country may soon run out of space to house refugees from Syria. Nearly 70,000 have crossed the border since the conflict began.

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