"Russia has invested very seriously in this crisis, politically, diplomatically and now also militarily," Vitaly Churkin said, referring to an international agreement to cease hostilities sealed in Munich last week.

At their meeting in Munich, the 17-nation group backing Syria's peace process agreed to work for a ceasefire, the lifting of starvation sieges and the resumption of talks.

In an interview with media last week, Assad defiantly pledged to retake the whole of the country, speaking before the plan for a nationwide "cessation of hostilities" in Syria was announced.

If Syria "follows Russia's leadership in resolving this crisis, then they have a chance to come out of it in a dignified way," Churkin stressed.

"If they in some way stray from this path -- and this is my personal opinion -- a very difficult situation could arise. Including for themselves," he warned.

Churkin however also suggested that Assad's comments were made for political impact. "It isn't worth putting too much significance into one statement or another and dramatising them," he said.

Latest News from World News Desk