Syria: ‘no volume of UN observers can end the violence’ says head of UN Monitoring Mission
The head of the UN observer team in Syria has warned that the mission cannot permanently end the violence without genuine talks between the two sides.
3:33PM BST 18 May 2012
Speaking in Damascus, Major General Robert Mood warned that no number of observers can achieve “a permanent end to the violence if the commitment to give dialogue a chance is not genuine from all internal and external actors.”
The UN estimates that the violence in Syria has killed more than 9,000 people.
A ceasefire brokered by UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan in April, which also paved the way for UN observers, has failed to stop the violence.
Both sides have flouted the cease-fire, raising concerns that the peace plan is ineffective in a conflict where the violence is spinning out of control.
“We are very serious, very serious and very committed to the Syrian people, innocent women and children, helping to regain the hope to return back to normality. But we must be given a real chance to do that from the fighting parties and their supporters,” Major General Mood said on Friday.
Video footage posted online continues to show the violence in areas around Homs, such as Rastan.
One video appears to show artillery shells and rockets being fired on Rastan.
Another shows a man, apparently injured by sniper fire, being dragged and carried into a house by others.
The footage cannot be independently verified because of reporting restrictions inside Syria.