20°C / 22°C
  • Fri
  • 26°C
  • 14°C
  • Sat
  • 25°C
  • 15°C
  • Sun
  • 26°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 29°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 26°C
  • 16°C
  • Wed
  • 28°C
  • 15°C
  • Fri
  • 22°C
  • 13°C
  • Sat
  • 20°C
  • 14°C
  • Sun
  • 21°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 25°C
  • 15°C
  • Wed
  • 25°C
  • 15°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 29°C
  • 16°C
  • Sun
  • 29°C
  • 16°C
  • Mon
  • 30°C
  • 16°C
  • Tue
  • 28°C
  • 17°C
  • Wed
  • 30°C
  • 16°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 15°C
  • Sat
  • 29°C
  • 16°C
  • Sun
  • 31°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 32°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 30°C
  • 16°C
  • Wed
  • 30°C
  • 16°C
  • Fri
  • 23°C
  • 19°C
  • Sat
  • 27°C
  • 20°C
  • Sun
  • 25°C
  • 20°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 17°C
  • Tue
  • 25°C
  • 16°C
  • Wed
  • 29°C
  • 19°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 14°C
  • Sat
  • 20°C
  • 16°C
  • Sun
  • 21°C
  • 16°C
  • Mon
  • 22°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 21°C
  • 15°C
  • Wed
  • 21°C
  • 15°C
  • Fri
  • 27°C
  • 10°C
  • Sat
  • 23°C
  • 12°C
  • Sun
  • 22°C
  • 11°C
  • Mon
  • 27°C
  • 10°C
  • Tue
  • 31°C
  • 11°C
  • Wed
  • 34°C
  • 14°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Sat
  • 20°C
  • 14°C
  • Sun
  • 19°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 23°C
  • 13°C
  • Wed
  • 27°C
  • 13°C
  • Fri
  • 27°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 29°C
  • 16°C
  • Sun
  • 31°C
  • 16°C
  • Mon
  • 33°C
  • 16°C
  • Tue
  • 29°C
  • 18°C
  • Wed
  • 30°C
  • 17°C
  • Fri
  • 33°C
  • 13°C
  • Sat
  • 33°C
  • 15°C
  • Sun
  • 33°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 33°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 34°C
  • 14°C
  • Wed
  • 35°C
  • 17°C
  • Fri
  • 28°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 30°C
  • 17°C
  • Sun
  • 27°C
  • 16°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 17°C
  • Tue
  • 28°C
  • 16°C
  • Wed
  • 31°C
  • 15°C
  • Fri
  • 22°C
  • 10°C
  • Sat
  • 21°C
  • 14°C
  • Sun
  • 22°C
  • 12°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 10°C
  • Tue
  • 25°C
  • 12°C
  • Wed
  • 22°C
  • 13°C

Annan meets Assad in Damascus

UN peace envoy Kofi Annan had constructive talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Picture: AFP

DAMASCUS - Kofi Annan said he had constructive talks in Damascus on Monday with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who said the U.N. peace envoy's plan to end 16 months of bloodshed was being undermined by U.S. political support for "terrorists".

Within hours, Annan was due to head for Iran for talks with Syria's main ally in the region.

"I just had a positive and constructive discussion with President Assad," the United Nations special envoy said.

"We agreed an approach which I will share with the opposition," he told reporters. Once again, Annan stressed the important of halting violence and promoting political dialogue, the key points of the plan he put forward in April.

Syrian Foreign Ministry spokesman Jihad Makdissi said in a Twitter message: "In both meetings we reassured Annan of Syria's commitment to implement the 6-points Plan and hoped other side is mutually committed."

In a television interview aired on Sunday, Assad accused Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, as well as the United States, of supplying arms and logistical support to the rebels trying to overthrow him.

"We know that (Annan) is coming up against countless obstacles but his plan should not be allowed to fail, it is a very good plan," he told Germany's ARD network.

"The main obstacle (is) that many countries don't want (it) to succeed. So they offer political support and they still send armaments and send money to terrorists in Syria," Assad said, according to a transcript of the interview, held in English.

SECTARIAN LINES

Syria, led by members of a sect related to Shi'ite Islam, has alleged that the Sunni-led Gulf monarchies are supporting unrest among its Sunni majority as a way to check rising Shi'ite influence in the region, most notably that of Shi'ite Iran.

Anti-Assad activists in Syria reported army shelling and clashes with rebels on Monday in Deir Ezzor, Deraa, Homs, Aleppo and a neighbourhood of Damascus. Residents also reported the sound of gunfire in the capital.

An activist website said over 100 Syrians had been killed on Sunday, most of them civilians.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Sunday that Syrian opposition forces were growing more effective and the sooner the violence ended, the better the chances of sparing Syria's government a "catastrophic assault" by rebel fighters were.

While Assad has faced sanctions and international condemnation over his crackdown on dissent, major Western and Arab powers have shied away from direct military action.

Turkey has reinforced its border and scrambled fighter aircraft several times since Syria shot down a Turkish reconnaissance jet on June 22 over what Damascus said were Syrian territorial waters in the Mediterranean. Ankara said the incident occurred in international air space.

Comments

EWN welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

- Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
- Sexism
- Homophobia
- Religious intolerance
- Cyber bullying
- Hate speech
- Derogatory language
- Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the EWN community a safe and welcoming space for all.

EWN reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

EWN is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

comments powered by Disqus