Syria accepts UN peace plan but bloodshed persists | world | Hindustan Times
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Syria accepts UN peace plan but bloodshed persists

world Updated: Mar 28, 2012 00:56 IST
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Syria has accepted a peace plan by UN envoy Kofi Annan that includes a ceasefire by the Syrian government, but the bloodshed persisted as intense clashes between government troops and rebel fighters spilled across the border into Lebanon, officials said.

Syrian troops did not physically cross the border, according to two Lebanese security officials, but bullets whizzed across the frontier into a rural, sparsely populated area.

"There is no Syrian military presence on the Lebanese side of the border," the official said.

The UN says more than 8,000 people have been killed in Syria's uprising, which began last March with mostly peaceful protests against the regime. But the government swiftly unleashed its military tanks, snipers and machine-guns to break up protests, which many opposition members say drove them to take up arms.

Now, as the conflict spirals toward civil war, there are concerns that the bloodshed could cause a regional conflagration by pulling in neighboring countries.

A diplomatic push to end the crisis has largely failed, but Ahmad Fawzi, a spokesman for Annan, said Tuesday that the Syrian government has accepted the envoy's six-point plan to end the bloodshed. The plan includes a ceasefire and inclusive talks about a political solution.

Syrian opposition member reacted with skepticism, however. Rami Jarah, who was attending an opposition meeting Tuesday in Turkey, said President Bashar Assad is trying to stall for time.