As the violence intensifies across Syria, France is to urge the United Nations to to consider a no-fly zone option.
Taking the toughest stance yet by a major power, the French government wants the UN to enforce Kofi Annan’s peace plan and to invoke Chapter 7 which can authorise the use of force.
The move would require the cooperation of Russia which throughout the 15 month-old uprising, has shielded President Bashar al Assad from international action.
The UN’s monitoring mission of the April 12 ceasefire has become increasingly ineffectual with both sides ignoring the truce.
Unable to stop the death toll rising the observers have become a target themselves of protesters and snipers.
With their access to conflict areas severely restricted, frustration among the international community has provoked the French initiative.