US, Russia fail to reach Syria ceasefire deal

The United States and Russia came up short on Sunday in attempts to finalise a ceasefire deal in Syria, as US President Barack Obama said “grave differences” remained and fighting on the ground continued.

Russia and the US have been striving for weeks to secure a ceasefire between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s government and moderate rebels that would expand humanitarian access to hundreds of thousands of civilians caught in the crossfire.

According to AlJazeera, the strategy has hinged on an unlikely US-Russian militarily partnership against “extremist groups” operating in Syria. But beyond the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and al-Qaeda, Moscow and Washington have conflicting views about who fits in that category.