Sept 11 (Reuters) - Here is a snapshot of Reuters news about the crisis in Syria:
* U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Geneva to meet his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov to hear Russia's plans to disarm Syria of its chemical weapons and avert U.S.-led military strikes. U.S. officials say Kerry will insist any deal force Syria to take rapid steps to show it is serious about abandoning its chemical arsenal.
* Lavrov says there is still a chance for peace in Syria and warns U.S. President Barack Obama that military intervention would further destabilise the country and the wider region.
* Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says Syria will fulfill an initiative to hand over its chemical weapons only when the United States stops threatening to strike Syria.
* The United Nations says it has received a document from Syria on joining the global anti-chemical weapons treaty.
* Obama says he is shifting his focus to domestic priorities from the tense period during which he sought congressional approval to use military force against Syria.
* Salim Idriss, head of a Western-backed Syrian rebel leadership council, says it rejects Russia's initiative to place Syria's chemical weapons under international control.
* Syrian warplanes have bombed one of the main hospitals serving rebel-held territory in the north of the country, according to activists and video footage.
* Death toll from an alleged massacre in an Alawite village in central Syria has risen to 22, including women, children and elderly men, the anti-Assad Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says. The minority Alawite sect to which Assad and most of Syria's elite belong has increasingly been targeted by radical fighters among the Sunni Muslim-dominated opposition.
* A surge of clashes in Syria's oil-producing northeast has killed dozens of rebels and Kurdish fighters in the past two days, activists say. The fighting highlights a struggle for territory and resources.
* For a government under siege from rebels and international sanctions, Assad's administration shows no lack of confidence in being able to go on feeding its people. Official media offers glowing reports of new bakeries serving up tasty, subsidised bread and ministers assure Syrians of ample stocks in state granaries, but repeated failures of tenders to import wheat and other staples tell a different story - one echoed in tales from the streets of scarcity and rising prices.
* Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan says he doubts Assad will fulfil his pledge to put Syria's chemical weapons under international control and accuses him of buying time for new "massacres".
* A senior Israeli official close to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu voices cautious support for the plan to place Syria's chemical weapons under international control.
* British Foreign Secretary William Hague says any deal has to be enforceable and ensure the chemical arsenal does not fall into the wrong hands.
* French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius says U.N. inspectors who investigated the Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack in Syria will "probably" publish their report on Monday.
* U.N. investigators will not explicitly pin the blame on anyone in their report, but diplomats say their factual reporting alone could suggest which side in the country's civil war was responsible.
* Washington's last-minute decision to call off military strikes against Syria deals a blow to Saudi Arabia and Qatar, but the states that arm the rebels battling Assad will not soon give up on a war that has already cost them billions.
* France says it will be clear next week whether the Russian proposal to control Syria's chemical weapons is credible, but warns of a risk of being fooled if Western allies do not stick to their demands.
* An initial French draft of a U.N. Security Council resolution will demand that Syria make a complete declaration of its chemical weapons programme within 15 days and immediately open all related sites to U.N. inspectors or face possible punitive measures, Reuters has learned.
* If Saddam Hussein's Iraq is anything to go by, destroying Syria's massive chemical weapons arsenal will mean checking dozens of far-flung sites in a war zone while the government employs delaying tactics to hide the banned munitions, an expert involved in past U.N. disarmament missions says.
* Italian authorities have seized a "mother ship" used to traffic illegal migrants across the Mediterranean and picked up about 200 Syrians fleeing the civil war in their homeland, officials say.
* Where once they were welcomed as brothers, Syrian refugees are now taunted in Cairo's streets - an open hostility fueled by a media campaign that casts them as "terrorists" allied with the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood and former president Mohamed Mursi, who was overthrown by the army on July 3.
* Russian President Vladimir Putin has found many ways and places to browbeat the United States over the years. But the latest choice for an attack, an op-ed article in the New York Times, was an unusual departure, even though it was not his first column for the newspaper - he wrote one defending his decision to send troops to war in Chechnya in 1999.
"When we see the United States really wants stability in our region and stops threatening, striving to attack, and also ceases arms deliveries to terrorists, then we will believe that the necessary processes can be finalised," Syrian President Bashar al-Assad quoted by Russian state television.
"Even as we have been spending a lot of time on the Syria issue and making sure that international attention is focused on the horrible tragedy that occurred there, it is still important to recognize that we've got a lot more stuff to do here in this government." - U.S. President Barack Obama
"The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria's borders." - Russian President Vladimir Putin.
"We were and are still waiting for these strikes. We are waiting and still waiting to receive weapons and ammunition, and we told our friends in the United States we hope that you will support us." - General Salim Idris, head of the Western-backed Free Syrian Army.
* U.S. stocks edge down as a drop in jobless claims provided few clues on the Federal Reserve's policy decision next week while a drop in euro zone factory output data stalled an eight-day rise in world equity markets. Moves towards a diplomatic solution on Syria have lent support to financial markets in recent days.
* U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva for talks on Syria, and also plans to meet U.N.-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi while there. The U.S. State Department says the talks with Lavrov are due to start at 7:30 p.m. local time (1730 GMT/1:30 p.m ET) (Compiled by David Brunnstrom in Washington)