The United Nations observer mission in Syria has suspended its activities in Syria. The head of the U.N. mission in Syria said Saturday that the mission suspended its operations and patrols because of the increased violence in the country.
According to statements made to the press by Norwegian Major General Robert Mood, head of the U.N. Mission, regarding the intensified violence over the last 10 days, there is an increased risk to U.N. observers. As he put it, there is “…a lack of willingness by the parties to seek a peaceful solution.” Therefore the decision has been made to suspend the U.N. Observer Mission.
He also said the violence was posing risks to the safety of his staff.
The observers will carry out no patrols "until further notice," he added. This interruption of their activities will be reviewed daily, Reuters news reported.
According to press reports, Syria's Foreign Ministry released a statement that it had been told of the decision to suspend the mission on Friday evening and had told the head of the U.N. mission in Syria Major-General Robert Mood that it understood his concerns and blamed the attacks on the rebels who are fighting government forces, the official new agency SANA reported.
Political Analysts Say the halt of the U.N. mission is the latest sign that Kofi Annan’s peace plan in Syria has failed as the warring sides are ignoring the earlier ceasefire declared in April.
Meanwhile, Syrian forces bombed the outskirts of the capital, Damascus, killing at least 12 people, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported Saturday.
Eight of the victims were killed in Douma, a suburb of Damascus, where the regime's forces fired mortar shells that hit a residential building, said the same source. The other four people, including three from the same family, were killed in Tel Arbin, according to Mohammed Said, an opposition activist there.
However, the Syrian opposition, as well as France, warned of a possible massacre in the central city of Homs, which it said is besieged by 30,000 troops and pro-regime fighters. AFP news reported.
Moreover, according to Israeli army website, Israeli army spokesperson said on Friday that Syria's allies Iran and Hizbullah are coming to realize that Bashar Assad's regime has “reached its end."
He wrote on his official Facebook page: "Assad’s allies are beginning to understand that the end is just a matter of time and therefore I wouldn’t be surprised if they are already planning for the day after," Israel national news website reported.