BEIRUT - Syria's President Bashar Assad has said government agencies should increase cooperation on aid work but it must be done without "compromising national sovereignty", state media reported.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said last month none of the warring parties in Syria was meeting UN demands for aid access and demanded the Security Council take action on violations of international law.

Blaming "terrorists" for inflicting suffering on civilians, Assad was quoted by state news agency SANA late on Saturday as saying aid work was a top priority for the government and urged agencies to increase cooperation.

Assad stressed "the importance of delivering aid without delay and continuing field work with all concerned bodies domestically and abroad to ease relief operations without compromising national sovereignty", SANA said.

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