Speed Reads

Crisis in Syria

Syrian rebel groups threaten to boycott peace talks

On Monday, several Syrian rebel groups released a statement saying they won't even discuss joining in peace talks with the government as long as President Bashar al-Assad's regime continues to violate the cease-fire that went into effect between the two sides on Friday.

The rebel groups said the Syrian army and militias backed by Iran have "continued firing and committed many and large violations" in several areas, including the rebel-held Wadi Barada Valley near Damascus, home to a spring that provides most of the water supply to Syria's capital. They also said the cease-fire would become null and void if the Syrian army makes any territorial advances. Moscow is leading the effort to hold peace talks in Kazakhstan, and the fragile cease-fire was brokered by Russia and Turkey last week.