Syria's Foreign Minister Walid Moallem pledged that the government will continue to respect a week-old ceasefire after insurgents killed 10 soldiers today.
Six members of the security forces died and 11 were wounded in a roadside bomb blast in the village of Mastouma in Idlib province, while a second explosion in the Aleppo region killed four troops along with a civilian.
Despite this, Mr Moallem told his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi at a meeting in Beijing that Syria will “continue to co-operate” with special envoy Kofi Annan’s six-point plan to end 13 months of bloodshed.
The country will “honour and implement Mr Annan’s six-point proposal, fulfil its ceasefire, troop withdrawal and other relevant commitments and begin co-operation with the UN monitoring team,” he declared.
Mr Yang said he hoped Syria would “actively co-operate in putting in place the ceasefire monitoring mechanism and sincerely embark on a process of inclusive political dialogue and reform to bring about a just, peaceful and appropriate resolution to the Syrian question.”
A troop pullback is a key provision of Mr Annan’s plan — but Syrian tanks and troops continue to engage insurgents in pockets of the country.
Opposition activists claimed that government forces fired mortar shells at an insurgent stronghold in Homs yesterday, killing at least two civilians.
Speaking in Luxembourg UN secretary general Ban Ki Moon said: “The overall cessation of violence has been generally observed,” despite “sporadic” violence.
An advance team of half a dozen observers has been in Syria since the weekend.
The team visited Daraa yesterday but it has not commented on the field trip.
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