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April 12, 2012 7:43 am

UN Ceasfire Takes Effect in Syria

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The opening of the Human Rights Council urgent debate on Syria in February, 2012. Photo: wiki commons.

NY Times – After months of intensifying bloodshed, an uncertain cease-fire backed by the United Nations and brokered by the special envoy Kofi Annan went into effect in Syria early on Thursday with none of the by-now-familiar reports of shelling by government forces and mayhem in major cities, activists said.

But the exiled Syrian National Council opposition, which is seeking the overthrow of President Bashar al-Assad, said that there were reports of raids and arrests of the government’s opponents in some suburbs of Damascus and that it was not clear how long the guns would remain silent. Several hours after the cease-fire deadline, there had been no reports of major infringements, but activists said they were concerned that government troops had not returned to barracks, as stipulated in the Annan plan.

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