Syrian opposition says talks with Russian Federation over southern Daraa 'fail'

Jordanian soldiers control the border between Syria and Jordan on July 1

Syrians fleeing the fighting and heading towards Jordan have been denied entry, with authorities there saying they do not have the resources to deal with more refugees.

A picture taken on July 4, 2018 from the Golan Heights shows displaced Syrians from the province of Daraa staging a protest calling for global protection, in the Syrian village of al-Rafid, near the border fence with Israel.

Jordan and Israel have said their borders would remain closed, even as tens of thousands of Syrians flee the government offensive.

At least 330,000 people have recently fled Syria's southwestern city of Daraa to areas near the Jordanian border due to fierce attacks by Syrian regime forces, the United Nations said Tuesday.

Accompanied by a major Russian aerial bombing campaign that has led to some of the fastest mass displacements of the war, Syrian pro-government forces have marched swiftly into insurgent territory in Deraa province over the past two weeks.

An opposition source from the south with close knowledge of the talks said Russia's piecemeal approach to the deals had hamstrung the negotiating committee.

On June 26, the Syrian army launches an assault on Daraa city, targeting several neighbourhoods with air raids and artillery fire.

Until recently, the deal contained fighting in the southwest of Syria.

With world attention focused elsewhere, Lesch says, Syria and Russian Federation are likely to continue a brutal campaign to destroy rebel forces and the civilians who live in the areas where rebels have maintained strongholds.

The government's offensive so far has focused on Daraa province, which borders Jordan, but not Quneitra province abutting the Israeli Golan Heights.

Southwest Syria is a "de-escalation zone" of reduced warfare and bombardment agreed by Russia, Jordan and the United States previous year.

In an interview with Israeli radio station 102 FM, Israel's Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said: "I think we must prevent the entry of refugees from Syria to Israel; in the past we have prevented such cases".

But Moscow had roundly rejected the terms, the source said, according to AFP, and responded with a counter-proposal.

UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Anders Pedersen, said in a statement that this is the largest population displacement in southern Syria since the onset of the crisis.

Earlier in the day, the Observatory said calm prevails Daraa except for the town of Tafas in the eastern countryside of the province, where battles are continuing between the government army and the rebels who pledged alliance with the IS.

Lavrov said all Syria-related issues were likely to be discussed at the coming summit meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin.



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