ICRC seeks Russian assistance on Syria

The humanitarian situation in Syria is likely to get worse, the head of the Swiss-run International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Monday.

This content was published on March 19, 2012 minutes and agencies

However, after a 90-minute meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Jakob Kellenberger said Lavrov voiced clear support for a plan for daily humanitarian ceasefires in Syria and promised Russia would press President Bashar Assad’s government to accept it.

Lavrov “clearly agreed to and was supportive of” the idea of a daily two-hour cessation of hostilities to allow for life-saving aid operations, Kellenberger told Reuters.

Asked whether Lavrov had promised that Russia would pressure Syria's government on the plan, he said, “Yes, very much so”.


Russia's close ties with Syria make it one of the few countries left with any leverage over President Bashar Assad.

Some 8,000 people are thought to have been killed in the year-long uprising against Assad. Russia, along with China, has vetoed proposals at the United Nations to condemn Assad’s regime.

On Saturday up to three explosions in the Syrian capital of Damascus killed around 30 people and wounded at least 100, according to state media reports.

In compliance with the JTI standards

In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

Contributions under this article have been turned off. You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

Share this story

Change your password

Do you really want to delete your profile?