Riad Hijab

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 Russian president Vladimir Putin and Syrian president Bashar al-Assad hug at a meeting in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, Russia on Monday. Photograph: Mikhail Klimentyev, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP

A surprise meeting on Monday between Russian president Vladimir Putin and his Syrian counterpart Bashar al-Assad demonstrated both that Assad remains (...)

A market in   an eastern rebel-held district of Aleppo: a fragile ceasefire in Syria has allowed people in the besieged city to leave their homes and shop, and visit friends and relatives. Photograph: Karam al-Masri/AFP/Getty Images

The Saudi-sponsored Syrian opposition yesterday announced it would take part in the second session of UN-mediated indirect talks to end the five-year (...)

A boy stands near a hole in the ground after a shell fell in the rebel-held town of Jarjanaz, southern Idlib countryside. Photograph: Khalil Ashawi/Reuters

A total of 135 people were killed in the first week of a partial truce in Syria in areas covered by the deal, a monitoring group said on Saturday, hi(...)

UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura  during a press briefing in Geneva, where he announced a “temporary pause” until February 25th of talks aimed at ending the civil war. Photograph: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images

UN-mediated talks to end the war in Syria are on pause until February 25th, UN envoy Staffan de Mistura said on Wednesday, saying the talks had not fa(...)

A Syrian protester waves a national flag at a rally  in June 2011.  Five years of this conflict have been too much, says UN envoy Staffan de Mistura. Photograph: AP Photo

The Saudi-backed Syrian opposition High Negotiations Committee yesterday decided to boycott today’s long-awaited opening of talks in Geneva to end the(...)

 Walid Muallem, Deputy Prime Minister of Syria:  will head the government delegation to UN-brokered peace talks. Photograph: Andrew Renneisen/Getty Images

Syrian foreign minister Walid Muallem has been invited to head the government delegation to UN-brokered peace talks due to open in Geneva on Friday, R(...)

Syrians wait for an aid convoy on Monday  in the besieged town of Madaya as part of a  six-month deal  in September for an end to hostilities  in exchange for humanitarian help. Photograph: Marwan Ibrahim/AFP/Getty Images

Madaya was quiet on Tuesday. Its streets were empty of people or animals, just as they had been for many months. But for the first time since a brutal(...)

 Syrians wait on Monday for the arrival of an aid convoy  in the besieged town of Madaya, where more than two dozen people are reported to have starved to death. Photograph: Marwan Ibrahim/AFP/Getty Images

The first trucks from a convoy carrying food and medical aid entered the besieged Syrian town of Madaya on Monday, only to discover harrowing scenes (...)

UN envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura (left) and Iran’s deputy foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian arrive for a meeting in Tehran. Photograph: Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images

UN envoy Staffan de Mistura has wound up a regional tour with assurances from both Iran and Saudi Arabia that regional tensions will not affect their(...)