There’s been a tentative agreement for a ceasefire in Syria, the first of its kind brokered by United Nations Peace Envoy, Lakhdar Brahimi since he took over from his predecessor Kofi Annan. Human rights activists say the 19-month long conflict in the country has now claimed the lives of more than 34,000 people. And now apparently President Bashar al-Assad has ‘positively’ received the proposal of a ‘laying down of arms’ ahead of the upcoming Muslim holiday, Eid. Brahimi is reported to have said he pushed "extremely hard" for the agreement.
Mr Brahimi who met with Assad in Damascus, said the truce between the Syrian government and some rebel forces will begin on Friday, lasting the whole four days of the festival. Last week, Brahimi held talks between opposition groups - inside and outside Syria - receiving "promises" but not a "commitment" from them to honour the cease-fire.
He said ‘…If this humble initiative is successful, we hope to use it as a building block for talks on a longer ceasefire and a ceasefire must be a part of a well-rounded political process."
As unverified footage emerged today of more attacks, this time on the Syrian border town of Haram, the Head of the Syrian National Council - the main opposition group in exile - claimed he had little hope the truce will hold. And despite this peace contract being more modest than the one Kofi Annan proposed, one which didn’t sustain, world leaders will be holding their breath to see what happens here.
Written and presented by Marverine Cole.