Joint Special Envoy for the League of Arab States for the Syrian Crisis, Kofi Annan, was in Damascus on Monday for talks with President Assad. Annan described the talks with President Bashar Al-Assad as “candid and constructive”.
The talks were aimed at ending the violence which has dominated Syria for the past sixteen months and the former United Nations Secretary General stated that they “had agreed on an approach”. However, it remains to be seen what difference the latest round of talks will make.
A six-point peace plan drawn up by Annan had previously been agreed to by Assad and the opposition leaders but the violence still goes on and the divided factions in Syria have yet to find a peaceful way forward.
The six-point plan called for a cessation from the violence, access for humanitarian agencies, the release of prisoners and the start of a political dialogue between all parties. The plan also said that media should also be given unrestricted access.
A team of unarmed monitors had been sent to Syria to ensure that the plan was being adhered to. However, they were forced to pull out temporarily because of the violence. It was said at the time that they would return to continue their work.
It has been estimated by the United Nations than 10,000 men, women and children have died so far in the conflict and thousands more displaced.