The international envoy for Syria,Kofi Annan,expects President Bashar al-Assad to implement his peace plan immediately,the former UN chief’s spokesman said today.
“We expect him to implement this plan immediately. Clearly,we have not seen a cessation of hostilities on the ground. This is our great concern,” the spokesman said,adding that the “deadline is now” for the Syrian regime to cease all violence.
Assad has vowed to work to make a success of the six-point peace plan drawn up by the UN-Arab League envoy,Syrian state news agency SANA said yesterday.
The plan calls for a commitment to stop all armed violence,a daily two-hour humanitarian ceasefire,media access to all areas affected by the fighting,an inclusive Syrian-led political process,a right to demonstrate,and release of arbitrarily detained people.
“It’s imperative that the killings stop and the human rights abuses stop and the violence stops,” said Annan’s spokesman.
“I can’t tell you what the next steps will be if they don’t stop now,” he said,adding however that Annan was due to brief the UN Security Council on Monday and “we will take it from there.”
Annan is also working to persuade the Syrian opposition to “lay down their arms and start talking”,the spokesman said.
The envoy plans to visit Iran,Syria’s chief ally in the Middle East,although the date has not been fixed.
“He intends to visit Tehran in the near future,as well as Riyadh,to impress upon governments the importance of unity in the international community behind his plans and to stress that this is the only plan in town,” the spokesman said.