Envoy arrives in Syria amid calls for truce

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BEIRUT — Turkey and Germany today threw their weight behind calls for a Syrian cease-fire during a Muslim holiday next week as the international envoy for the conflict arrived in Damascus to push for the plan.

The effort has taken on urgency after activists in recent days reported some of the heaviest air bombardments by President Bashar Assad’s military against rebel-held areas.

Lakhdar Brahimi, the joint U.N.-Arab League envoy, was expected to meet Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem on Saturday. Brahimi has called for a truce by both sides in the civil war during the four-day Eid al-Adha holiday that begins next Friday.

Others who have joined the calls for peace include Assad’s allies in Iran.

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