BEIRUT

Lebanon News

Syria’s deputy foreign minister heads to Russia

Meqdad welcomes Brahimi upon his arrival at a hotel in Damascus.

BEIRUT: Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Meqdad and his assistant, Ahmad Arnous, flew to Moscow Wednesday via Beirut airport.

The trip comes as U.N.-Arab League peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi holds talks in Damascus in a fresh bid to end the conflict in Syria.

Brahimi expressed concern earlier this week about the crisis in Lebanon’s neighbor.

Activists said Wednesday that over 45,000 people have been killed since unrest swept Syria in March 2011, Agence France Presse reported.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights told the agency that 45,048 people have been killed in the violence, adding that more than 1,000 people were killed in the last one week itself.

Brahimi recently held talks with U.S. and Russian officials, who hold opposite views on how to deal with the Syrian crisis.

Syria's state-run news agency SANA said Monday Foreign Minister Walid Moallem, Meqdad and presidential advisor Buthaina Shaaban all attended the meetings between Assad and Brahimi.

Washington has repeatedly called for the ouster of Assad, while Moscow still remains one of the few staunch supporters of the Damascus regime. – With AFP

 

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