Kerry: Syria cease-fire could be just hours, or days, away

Islamic Extremism

In this photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, an injured victim of the triple blast in Sayyida Zeinab, a predominantly Shiite Muslim suburb of the Syrian capital Damascus arrives to a hospital to receives treatment, Syria, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016. (SANA via AP)

A ceasefire in Syria could be hours or days away according to the U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.

“We are in fact making progress, even as I stand here today,” Kerry said. “There is aid now getting through, the modalities for a cessation of hostilities are now being completed. In fact, we are closer to a ceasefire today than we have been, and I take nothing for granted about this.”

Syrian President Bashar al Assad said his government was prepared to honor the cease-fire but that a cessation of hostilities must not provide an opportunity for U.S. backed anti-government forces to rearm and regroup.

He said the cease-fire should be part of a larger effort to improve conditions in Syria and stop the flow of refugees.

Kerry expected U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin to speak on the phone soon to finalize terms of the ceasefire.

Meanwhile, some food was getting through to towns ravaged by the war.

“This is the first convoy since July 2014, and the World Food Program is now providing family rations for all the 45,000 citizens that are remaining here,” Jakob Kern of the World Food Program said.

But even as ceasefire talks intensified, the fighting continued. Weekend bombings in Homs and Damascus killed dozens and wounded even more.