UN panel urges revival of ceasefire in Syria

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UNITED NATIONS, Sept 6 (APP): A United Nations investigative panel  has called on all parties involved in the deadly conflict in Syria to revitalize a shaky nationwide ceasefire in the war-torn Arab state.

The UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria, which is tasked with investigating human rights violations in the Arab country, made the  request in its 12th report published on Tuesday.

The cessation of hostilities brokered by the US and Russia went into effect in Syria on February 27. However, fighting still rages on in some parts of Syria, particularly around the city of Aleppo.

The February truce offered a “glimmer of hope” to civilians in Syria, but just a month later, fighting and indiscriminate attacks on residential areas increased, the commission said.

“The cessation of hostilities agreement brought a welcome respite for civilians that lasted all too briefly,” the commission added, emphasizing that “the sense of  hope engendered earlier this year must be revitalized.”

The UN panel further called for more support for UN Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura, who is trying to restart UN-brokered negotiations  aimed at resolving the crisis in the Middle Eastern country.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011.

According to De Mistura, more than 400,000 people have been killed  in the crisis in Syria. The UN has stopped its official casualty count  in Syria, citing its inability to verify the figures it receives from various sources.