Turkey reinforces military in Syria's Idlib after ceasefire call fails

Attack on Idlib could lead to worst loss of life this century: UN official

"A regime assault would also create serious humanitarian and security risks for Turkey, the rest of Europe and beyond", he would add.

Lowcock said the United Nations is doing "very detailed planning" to reach up to 800,000 displaced civilians and expects around 100,000 people to flee into government controlled areas with the remaining 700,000 initially fleeing attacks to other areas of Idlib.

"We can not allow terrorists to hold hostage and use hundreds of thousands of people of Idlib as human shields", said Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia.

United Nations Secretary General's Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura invited high-ranking diplomats from the three Syrian ceasefire guarantor nations for consultations in Geneva on September 10-11. "Every day, I need water, hay and bran to feed them". "Conventional weapons are responsible for far more deaths", he said.

Guterres made the appeal after the Security Council remained divided over Idlib on Tuesday.

Pierce said the council faces "a choice", between a Syrian regime and Russian "military assault on Idlib in which, as many colleagues have said today, thousands of civilians will die", or "we allow Turkey and opposition groups the support, space and time to separate out the terrorists and tackle them themselves".

Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Mark Lowcock's comments in Geneva came days after Iran and Russian Federation backed a military campaign in the rebel-held area despite Turkey's pleas for a cease-fire.

He acknowledged that there were many rebels and fighters from "terrorist" groups in the province, but stressed that "there are 100 civilians, a lot of them women and children, for every fighter in Idlib".

More news: The Pressure Gauge: Liverpool out to prove title credentials at Spurs

An estimated 3mn people live in Idlib - the last major stronghold of active opposition to President Bashar al-Assad.

"We've been hearing the regime and Russian Federation threaten to bomb us with chemical weapons", said Hadheefa al-Shahhad. On numerous occasions, Damascus has resorted to the use of chemical weapons, including nerve agents, in its efforts to regain territory.

"Russia, Iran and Assad are demolishing Idlib and asking us to call it peace".

"Establishing and making this committee - which is on the agenda thanks to the Astana process - will bring a new dynamism to the political process", he said.

But half the people here have already fled from other parts of Syria and they have nowhere left to go.

A major obstacle to a substantive agreement, observers say, is the fate of jihadists in the province, including foreign hardliners.

And Haley warned Assad and his allies for a second time that any assault on Idlib would be considered "reckless" by the USA and "the consequences will be dire".

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