Damascus accepts Annan peace plan for Syria

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Damascus accepts Annan peace plan for Syria

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Syria has accepted a peace plan proposed by Kofi Annan and backed by the UN Security Council, according to the special envoy’s spokesman.

But he acknowledged that implementing the plan would be crucial.

Visiting Beijing, Annan listed the six points the Syrians have agreed to:
“Political discussions, withdrawal of heavy weapons and troops from population centres; humanitarian assistance being allowed in unimpeded; release of prisoners; freedom of movement, and access for journalists to go in and out. So we will need to see how we move ahead and implement this agreement that they have accepted,” said the UN and Arab League envoy.

Meanwhile Syrian troops are said to have crossed the border into Lebanese territory, chasing rebels who had taken refuge there. Damascus says what it calls terrorist groups in Syria have been receiving weapons from supporters in Lebanon.

Inside Syria, a new video showed heavy clashes in Hama province on Monday, according to activists.

Grey smoke could be seen billowing out of an old castle amid the crackling sound of gunfire in the town of Qalaat al-Madyaq, believed to be in rebel hands. The footage is impossible to verify.

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says 16 people died in violence around the country on Monday.

Half the casualties, including two children, were said to have died in Homs.

Doctors in a makeshift hospital complained there were no medical supplies to treat the severely injured.

Kofi Annan believes his plan could end the bloodshed but the opposition says it will simply allow the repression to continue.

The UN says 8,000 people have died in the uprising. The government says armed rebels have killed 3,000 members of the security forces.