Annan says Syria must show it wants peace

BEIRUT Mon May 28, 2012 7:57am EDT

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BEIRUT (Reuters) - International mediator Kofi Annan said on Monday he was horrified by the killings in the Syrian town of Houla and urged the Syrian government to take bold steps to show it was serious about reaching a peaceful solution to the country's crisis.

Speaking shortly after arriving in Damascus, Annan said he expected to have "serious and frank discussions" with President Bashar al-Assad. The two men are due to meet on Tuesday, according to the Syrian Foreign Ministry.

Annan said the killing of 108 people in Houla was "an appalling crime, and the (U.N.) Security Council has rightly condemned it". Western countries have blamed Assad's forces for the killings, a charge Damascus denies.

"I urge the (Syrian) government to take bold steps to signal that it is serious in its intention to resolve this crisis peacefully, and for everyone involved to help create the right context for a credible political process," Annan told reporters on his arrival in Damascus.

"And this message of peace is not only for the government, but for everyone with a gun".

Annan brokered an April 12 ceasefire agreement, part of a broader six-point plan aimed at ending the bloodshed which has engulfed a 14-month uprising against Assad and leading towards a negotiated solution. But the truce has not held and hundreds of people have been killed in the last six weeks.

"The six point plan has to be implemented comprehensively, and this is not happening," Annan said.

(Reporting by Dominic Evans, editing by Diana Abdallah)

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Comments (2)
paul-B wrote:
the parade of out rage!
but lets not talk about the all the drones killing people all over the world
or all the aggressive wars fought over the past 10 years
or the several that is being prepared.

no world power would tolerate an armed resistance and would crush it with far more brutality than has been seen so far in syria

May 28, 2012 8:25am EDT  --  Report as abuse
moweddell wrote:
“Those who are ignorant of the past are comdemned to repeat it.” This applies to the history of the Islamic countries and the “Arab spring”. The Islamists have been ruled for centuries by kings, dictators, or zealous religious fanatics. They have lived by the code of the feud, with each blaming the other for their cause, while taking revenge and murder, in the name of jihad, against Christians, Jews, educated women and children, other religious sects, and even themselves. It has required “stroug hands” like a dictator to prevent rebellion, chaos, and anarchy. Further, these populations have from 40% to 70% (Cite UN-2002) illeteracy, and about the same number of unemployment. They do not even have any understanding of the duties or requirements of a citizen within a free society or a democracy. The population rebels and takes over, then they fall back into their misguided religion and elect another dictator, a fanatical cleric or clerics, like in Iran, and they end up right where they began, another dictator and more rebellion, hatred, murder, chos and the spreading of terrorism. They are condemned to a perpetual cycle of self destruction. In the long run the USA and allies are better off staying out of the frey until the “dust” settles, unless we are attached. Additionally, attention is given to the estimated 9,000 killed in this Syria Civil War where neither side actually wants peace. This is similar to other Islamic rebelling countries, but why doesn’t Mexico get any attention or intervention with their estimated 40,000 killed by thugs and drug cartels trying to take over their country. Mexico is a bigger threat to our security!!! Under the present American leadership and their impotent inaction, we are helpless and are failing to provide any resolution.

May 28, 2012 9:56am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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