United Nations        -            The United States blocked the adoption of a UN Security

Council statement Friday supporting a Syrian ceasefire

brokered by Russia and Turkey, diplomats said following a closed-door meeting. “It’s premature,” the United States said, rejecting

the joint statement which Russia’s ambassador to the UN, Vassily Nebenzia,

had asked the other 14 member states to adopt, according

to diplomats. “Various

countries took note and welcome the agreement,” said Nebenzia. “But due to a position from one delegation,

it was not possible.” Syria’s war-ravaged Idlib province woke to relative calm Friday, its skies free of warplanes for the first day in months, following the ceasefire deal reached by Russia’s President Vladimir

Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan. “There are a lot of questions about how it will work in practice, who will monitor it, what is happening

west of Aleppo and critically

has the Syrian government

formally signed up?” said British Ambassador Karen Pierce. Her German counterpart Christoph Heusgen

echoed the sentiment,