- Associated Press - Monday, June 15, 2015

UNITED NATIONS (AP) - The United Nations’ special envoy for Syria has started a visit to Damascus with several messages for President Bashar Assad’s government - the use of barrel bombs is unacceptable and a Syrian-led settlement is urgently needed to end the war.

U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Monday that Staffan de Mistura is looking forward to hearing the views of senior Syrian officials on how to implement the June 2012 Geneva communique calling for a transitional government.

He said de Mistura also intends to raise the government’s duty to protect civilians and the need to get aid to besieged areas

De Mistura has been meeting with many Syrian groups since May and will continue consultations into July before submitting a report to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on implementing the Geneva agreement, Dujarric said.

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