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Syria

Gulf Cooperation Council calls on UN to intervene in Syria

The six-member Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) has called on the UN to intervene in Syria to stop the aerial bombardment of Aleppo. As the latest ceasefire falls apart, fears rise that both sides will look to rearm.

The Sunni Muslim-dominated council - representing Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar - said a Syrian government offensive on the city was systematically destroying neighborhoods and was a "flagrant aggression contrary to international laws."

The Russian-Syrian military assault on Aleppo continued Saturday, with Russian airstrikes, barrel bombs and a shelling offensive by Syrian ground troops.

At least two barrel bombs hit the largest hospital in the rebel-held side of Aleppo, according to the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS). An official at the Suleiman al-Halabi pumping station in the rebel-held area said most of the city had water cuts on Saturday because of the damage.

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War in Syria: shame on the world?

UN Security Council should 'intervene immediately'

Since fighting first broke out there in 2012, Aleppo has been divided by a front line between rebel forces in the east and government troops in the west. After the government launched its offensive last month, more than 220 people have been killed by bombardment in Aleppo's east, including six children and 12 other civilians on Friday, according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

"The secretary-general ... demands that the UN Security Council intervene immediately to stop the aggression on the city of Aleppo and end the suffering of the Syrian people," the GCC said in a statement on Saudi state news agency SPA.

It called on the UN to "implement relevant council resolutions over the Syria crisis."

The collapse of the latest Syria ceasefire has heightened the possibility that Gulf states, including Saudi Arabia and Qatar, might arm Syrian rebels with shoulder-fired missiles to defend themselves against Syrian and Russian warplanes, US officials said Monday. The US continues to maintain that negotiations are the only way to end the carnage.

jbh/cmk (AFP, Reuters)

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