Ban Ki-moon: Syria yet to implement peace plan
New York, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA – United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday informed that the Syrian government has “failed” to comprehensively implement envoy Kofi Annan’s peace plan that requiring President Bashar-al Assad to pull out troops and heavy weapons from urban areas.
“The Syrian government is yet to fully implement its initial obligations regarding the actions and deployments of its troops, or to return them to barracks,” Ban told the Security Council in a letter highlighting the progress since the Security Council passed a resolution Saturday authorizing the deployment of observers in the conflict ridden nation.
The secretary general said the level of violence had dropped when the ceasefire began but there had been an escalation in recent days and breaches had been reported by both sides the government as well as the rebel forces.
“Violent incidents and reports of casualties have escalated again in recent days, with reports of shelling of civilian areas and abuses by government forces… The government reports violent actions by armed groups.”
He however said there was an “opportunity for progress” to implement the plan aiming to end more than a year of unrest that is believed to have left 9,000 people dead..
Activists said at least 30 people were killed Wednesday in shelling in Homs even as Syria’s state media Thursday reported that four soldiers were killed in attacks in Aleppo. Ban also suggested 30-member observer mission in the country should be expanded to 300 to report more progress about the week-old truce.
The plan for hundreds of observers to monitor the ceasefire was agreed between Syria and the United Nations. The Syrian Foreign Ministry said the “preliminary agreement” aims to facilitate the task of the “observers within the framework of Syrian sovereignty”. The agreement will need a nod from the 15-member UN Security Council.