China pushing Syrian regime to honor ceasefire


China on Wednesday urged Syria’s government and opposition factions to honor their commitments, after the regime accepted a proposal crafted by Kofi Annan designed to end the bloody conflict.

The comments came a day after aides to the United Nations and Arab League special envoy said the government of President Bashar al-Assad had accepted his six-point proposal, a move cautiously welcomed by Western nations.

“We are happy to see the Syrian government has accepted the six-point proposal of special envoy Annan, and believe it will be conducive to the political settlement of the Syrian issue,” said Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hong Lei.

“We hope the Syrian government and relevant parties in Syria will honor their commitments,” he told journalists at a regular briefing.

Annan’s plan calls for a commitment to stop all armed violence, a daily two-hour humanitarian ceasefire, and media access to all areas affected by the fighting in Syria.

It also calls for an inclusive Syrian-led political process, a right to demonstrate, and the release of people detained arbitrarily.

The proposal – put to Assad by Annan during his visit to Damascus on March 10 and 11 – was endorsed by the UN Security Council on March 21.

Syria’s opposition factions, who agreed late Tuesday to name the Syrian National Council as their representative, have called on Assad to pull back his tanks to show he is serious about peace.

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