The Syrian government has informed Joint Special Envoy of the United Nations and the League of Arab States Kofi Annan that it will cease all military fighting throughout Syrian territory today.
Syrian government will cease military actions today as of 6:00 a.m. (Damascus time), Thursday, 12 April 2012.
The letter from Syria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs stated that the Syrian Government reserved “the right to respond proportionately to any attacks carried out by armed terrorist groups against civilians, Government forces or public and private property.”
Last week, the Syrian Government told Mr. Annan that it would begin immediately, and by April 10th will complete, the cessation of all forward deployment and use of heavy weapons and will complete its withdrawal from population centers.
Mr. Annan had previously stated that, once that happens, all parties should move immediately to cease all forms of violence, so that a complete cessation is in place today.
In his statement, Spokeperson Mr. Fawzi said that Mr. Annan will continue to work with the Syrian Government and the opposition to ensure the comprehensive implementation of his six-point plan to end the violence.
“The Joint Special Envoy looks forward to the continued support of relevant countries in this regard.” – Mr. Fawzi
Earlier this year, Ban Ki-Moon, the United Nations Secretary General, has appointed his predecessor, Kofi Annan, as international (UN-Arab League) Special Envoy to Syria. The UN comunique underscored that “The Special Envoy will provide good offices aimed atbringing an end to all violence and human rights violations, and promotinga peaceful solution to the Syrian crisis.”
On his visit to Syria’s capital Damascus on March 12, Mr. Kofi Annan urges President Bashar al-Assad to embrace change and reforms.
Mr. Annan’s six-point plan to end the violence was submitted during his visit to Damascus last month.
On 27th of March, Mr. Annan reported that the Syrian government had accepted the six point-plan and pledged to implement it.
A UN team visited the country in recent days to start technical preparations for the potential deployment of observers to monitor a cessation of armed violence and the full implementation of Mr. Annan’s plan.
Reports say Mr. Annan is expected to update the Security Council on Thursday.
Since the protests began on 26th January this year, the Assad regime’s violent response has lead to the death of more than 8,000 people. Many more have been injured, and thousands of protesters have been detained.