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Friday, August 17, 2012

UN ends Syria cease-fire mission

UNITED NATIONS – The Security Council has decided to end the U.N. military observer mission that was sent to monitor a cease-fire that never happened and back a small new liaison office that will support any future peace efforts.

The move Thursday came in the face an escalating civil war in Syria. Members who have been deeply divided on tackling the 18-month conflict were united behind U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's proposal to replace the 300 unarmed observers with a small group of military advisers and political, human rights and civil affair experts, France's U.N. Ambassador Gerard Araud, the current Security Council president, announced.

The council agreed that conditions set for possibly extending the observer mission -- a significant reduction in violence and an end to the Syrian government's use of heavy weapons -- had not been met and its mandate would end Sunday, he said. Read More