The Pope has again appealed for peace in Syria following the end of last week's inconclusive 11th round of peace talks in the Kazakh capital. Astana.
It did not lead to a breakthrough in a 10-month stalemate over how to form a constitutional committee, but the Pope warned time was running out for the Syrian people. and he deplored the level of suffering experienced by children.
The task of bringing all the parties together has proved too much for the UN's Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura, who has handed over to a new man, Geir Pedersen of Norway.
De Mistura has pursued peace for the last four years but is stepping down for personal reasons.
Pedersen is a career diplomat and UN veteran.