MARCH 27 2012 14:29h
Annan: Syria accepts peace plan
Spokesman Ahmad Fawzi said the Syrian government has offered written acceptance of Annan's six-point peace plan, which has been endorsed by the U.N. Security Council.
"Mr. Annan views this as an important initial step that could bring an end to the violence and the bloodshed, provide aid to the suffering, and create an environment conducive to a political dialogue that would fulfil the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people," Fawzi said.
Al-Jazeera said Annan, in China seeking Beijing's support for the peace plan, has asked Syrian President Bashar Assad to put the commitments "into immediate effect."
The United Nations has estimated more than 8,000 people have been killed in Syria in the past year in an uprising against Assad's government. Opposition groups put the total at more than 10,000.
Activists reported Syrian troop assaults Tuesday in the suburbs of Damascus and other areas of the country, The New York Times reported. Shelling was reported Monday in Homs.
Syria faces increasing isolation, with Turkey's announcement it closed the Turkish embassy in Damascus and ordered diplomatic staff withdrawn because of deteriorating security. Norway has also withdrawn diplomatic staff.
Syria's May 7 parliamentary elections are said to have been delayed due to the turmoil and international travel restrictions have been placed on all men of conscription age, even if they have already done their compulsory military service, The Times reported.
DAMASCUS, Syria, March 27 (UPI) -- The Syrian government has accepted a plan by U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan to end the bloodshed in Syria, a spokesman for Annan said.