US 'very concerned' over Syrian violence before peace talks

WASHINGTON - The United States is "very, very concerned" about an increase in Syrian violence just ahead of planned peace talks in Geneva this week, a State Department spokesman said on Monday, blaming Syrian government forces for the escalation in fighting.
"We are very, very concerned about the recent increase in violence and that includes actions that are in contravention of the cessation of hostilities," spokesman Mark Toner told a news briefing.
He said Secretary of State John Kerry conveyed the U.S concerns in a phone call with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, on Sunday.
"We would say that the vast majority of violations have been on the part of the regime," Toner said when asked who was to blame for violations.
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