Talks between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and US State Secretary John Kerry on the issue of the Syrian conflict will be held in the Qatari capital, Doha, on August 3, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said Thursday. "The talks will be held on Monday," Bogdanov told RIA Novosti, adding that Saudi Arabian officials "could join the meeting."Sputnik is also reporting UN Chief Admits Shameful Divisions and Failure Over Syria:
The United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has said the "slaughter" in Syria is a "shameful symbol of the international community’s divisions and failure" amid signs that the international organization has lost its sense of purpose.
As twelve million Syrians have been forced to leave their homes – adding to the millions forced to move out of other conflict areas across the Middle East and Africa – Mr Ban said: "Syria is the world’s largest humanitarian crisis."
He admitted that there was "a massive cross-border exodus, [as] Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq are hosting an ever growing number of refugees, and increasing numbers of Syrians making desperate flights across the Mediterranean in so-called 'death boats'."
Mr Ban told the UN Security Council (UNSC) that he was "profoundly disappointed" that previous resolutions aimed at preventing further violence in Syria had not been implemented. [...]Meanwhile Karin Laub at Associated Press is reporting:
The World Food Program announced new cuts Friday in food aid for Syrian refugees in Jordan, highlighting a growing funding crisis of international agencies helping millions displaced by Syria's conflict.
A last-minute U.S. donation of $65 million had kept food aid going, but funding in Jordan is not secured beyond August, even at the reduced level, the WFP said.
"This timely contribution has helped us avoid major cuts, but unless other donors step up to the plate, it will be only a matter of months before we face the same situation again," said WFP's regional director Muhannad Hadi.
The agency said it immediately needs $168 million to support refugees through October in the five main countries of the region that are hosting Syrian refugees.********