News Demonstrators protest against the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad outside the UN offices in Geneva during the talks on Friday

At first the talks were delayed for 24 hours, then Syria’s foreign minister threatened to walk out. But last night the two sides agreed to be in the same room. Kim Sengupta reports from Geneva on the UN mission to end the bloodshed

Assad regime 'fired Scud missiles' into rebel areas

The Foreign Office condemned the move and called it 'a further act of appalling brutality'

Five killed in Tripoli as Syrian conflict spreads to Lebanon

Five men were killed in the Lebanese port city of Tripoli today during sectarian clashes between gunmen loyal to opposing sides in neighbouring Syria's civil war, residents said.

Air strike on Syrian olive press kills and wounds dozens

A Syrian military air strike killed and wounded dozens of people when it hit an olive oil press near the northern city of Idlib today, activists said.

Syrian rebels celebrate the victory on top of a tank they took after storming a military base in Aleppo yesterday. William Hague, left, said the UK recognised the rebels as the 'sole legitimate representative' of the Syrian people today

William Hague: UK recognises and will support Syrian rebel group in fight against Assad

Britain is to offer support to a coalition of Syrian rebels after recognising it as the “sole legitimate representative” of the Syrian people, Foreign Secretary William Hague announced today.

Syrian rebels 'seize airport near Iraqi border'

Rebels have captured an airport used by Syria's military near the Iraqi border, activists said, a move which they said would allow them to maintain their hold on the recently seized border town of Albu Kamal.

US waits to affirm Syrian rebels

The United States declined to follow France in fully recognising a fledgling Syrian opposition coalition yesterday, saying the body must prove its worth after its predecessor was dogged by feuding and accusations of Islamist domination.

If Assad goes, Hezbollah will be alone in the Levant – much to the delight of Israel

Syria's fate is crucial to the future of the Lebanese group

Pro-government forces run across the street in the Suleiman al-Halabi nieghbourhood, now under full army control according to state media, of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on 30 October 2012 during clashes with Syrian opposition fighters

'Terrorists' kill Syria air force general, says state TV

Syrian state television said today that an air force general was assassinated in a Damascus suburb, the latest in a string of attacks on high-level figures from President Bashar al-Assad's administration.

A Hezbollah fighter in a Shia area of Beirut

Hezbollah crosses Syrian border with bloody assault on Assad's enemies

Special report: Shia fighters coming to the regime's aid have tipped the balance of power. Loveday Morris meets beleaguered rebels taking sanctuary a few kilometres from the border

Editorial: Lakhdar Brahimi's Syrian endeavour

Ceasefires are always a fragile arrangement. So much can go wrong that some last barely beyond the announcement, and others produce a spike of bloodshed as they end. The agreement of a four-day cessation of violence in Syria's increasingly savage civil war must therefore be a matter for prudence.

Assad replies to Syria ceasefire call with air strikes

Regime warplanes struck a strategic rebel-held town in the north yesterday in an attempt to reopen a key supply route, activists said, as a UN-proposed ceasefire appeared increasingly unlikely to take hold.

Violence erupts at funeral of murdered security chief

Lebanese protesters break through cordon and march on premier's office in Beirut

Lebanese soldiers walk amidst the rubble

Fears of Syria link as eight killed in Beirut car bomb

One of Lebanon's most senior security officials was killed yesterday in a car bombing which ripped through the centre of Beirut causing massive damage and raising the spectre of the bloody strife of Syria's civil war being imported across the border.

Civil war prompts tenfold rise in Syrians claiming asylum in UK

Barely 10 a month sought asylum before the war. In July and August, that figure exceeded 100

Peace envoy appeals for Iran to broker ceasefire during Eid

A peace envoy for the United Nations and Arab League asked Iran yesterday to help broker a ceasefire in the Syrian conflict during the Muslim holiday of Eid ul-Adha.

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