Annan Leaves Syria Optimistic, Warns on Greater Challenges

Annan Leaves Syria Optimistic, Warns on Greater ChallengesDamascus, Mar 12. – After a second meeting with President Bashar al-Assad, UN special envoy Kofi Annan left Syria for Qatar, but he warned about the difficulties to reach an agreement between the government and the opposition outside the country.

Annan and his accompanying delegation were received again on Sunday night by Al-Assad to discuss the details of his two-day visit, and his package of concrete proposals to "launch a process aimed at solving the crisis in Syria."

Without going into details on the content of his proposal, Annan stated that it is based on the realist response to make reforms and change."

During his first meeting on Saturday, President Al-Assad said he would support any honest mandate to end violence, but he warned that dialogue would fail if the terrorist groups remain on the ground.

Before traveling to Qatar, one of the mainstays in the anti-Syrian campaign, Annan recognized that to reach an arrangement between the external opposition and the Syrian government would be very complicated, although he expressed optimism.

During his mission, Annan proposed "to create windows through which humanitarian aid could be delivered to civilians who suffer in the conflict," the special envoy said.

UN Higher Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay visited Damascus before Annan. She met with Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem, who expressed his government's willingness to provide humanitarian neutral assistance, free of political manipulation and respecting Syria's sovereignty and independence.

During his stay in Damascus, Annan met with the Great Mufti of the Republic, Sheikh Hassoun, and the Patriarch of the Orthodox Christian Church of Antioch and All the East, Ignatio IV Hazim, as well as other religious leaders and national opposition figures.(Prensa Latina)