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Syrian death toll hits six-figure mark; Officials declare there is no military solution

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
July 26th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Beginning at first with the "Arab spring, protests against the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria was at first peaceful and orderly. They quickly changed once rebel forces rose up against the government, leading to a long series of standoffs and massacres through the city street. The death toll from the Syrian conflict, including countless men, women and children has now reached the six-figure mark, at 100,000 reported dead. Officials with the United Nations now say there is no military solution to the ongoing conflict.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon appealed for new efforts to convene a peace conference, calling upon the Syrian government and the opposition to halt the violence, saying it was "imperative to have a peace conference in Geneva as soon as possible."

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who stood nearby added that "There is no military solution to Syria. There is only a political solution, and that will require leadership in order to bring people to the table."

The overall Syrian death toll to date last month was nearly 93,000, with unarmed civilians bearing the brunt of the attacks.
 
In the meantime, the U.S. and Russia are trying to convene an international conference in Geneva, along with the United Nations, to try to agree on a transitional government based on a plan adopted in that city a year ago.

Kerry said he talked to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Wednesday and that both countries remained committed to bringing the warring parties together to further peace efforts. "We will try our hardest to make that happen as soon as is possible," Kerry said.

These efforts came hours after Syrian state media reported that a car bomb explosion near the capital of Damascus killed at least seven people and wounded 62. According to official state journalists, the bomb hit the al-Siyouf Square in the Jaramanah district of the capital.

The government blamed "terrorists" for the bombing, which is a loose term used by the Syrian government for rebels who are fighting a two-year-old civil war against President Bashar al-Assad.

Bombs had previously hit Jaramanah, which is a religiously mixed area under military control that houses supporters and opponents.

After rebel gains around the country, the army has pushed back in recent weeks and reinforced the capital while rebels hold outlying areas. The fighters use mortars and car bombs to hit areas still held by the government.

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