October 7, 2016 / 10:37 AM / 9 months ago

Germany urges Russia, Iran to pressure Syria to end violence

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German government spokesman Steffen Seibert arrives for a news conference in Berlin, Germany, April 15, 2016.Fabrizio Bensch/File Photo

BERLIN (Reuters) - The German government on Friday urged Russia and Iran as key backers of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to use their influence to halt the escalation of violence in the Syria and allow humanitarian supplies to be delivered to civilians there.

Asked if Germany supported imposing sanctions against Russia for its part in the bombardment, government spokesman Steffen Seibert said Germany understood that all options needed to be reviewed, but Berlin's top priority was achieving a ceasefire.

"We believe that Russia and Iran in particular are obligated to use their influence on the Assad regime to halt the escalation in violence and the suffering of the civilian population," Seibert told a regular government news conference.

Reporting by Caroline Copley and Andrea Shalal

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