Arab League To Meet In Baghdad
The Arab League is holding a summit - the first in two years - in Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone on Thursday, with Syria the main focus of the meeting.
The one-day summit will discuss a UN-backed peace plan for Syria amidst continued violence across the country.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon hopes special envoy Kofi Annan's plan for a ceasefire and talks will gain more traction.
Prior to arriving in Baghdad Thursday morning, he said, from Reuters:
"This is an important initial step that could bring an end to the violence and the bloodshed... I strongly urge President Assad of Syria to put those commitments into immediate effect."
But Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari says the onus for action is on the Syrian people, not the League.
Zebari, from AFP and Gulfnews.com:
"It is up to the people of Syria to decide, to choose, to elect their leaders. It's not up to the League or to anybody else."
More than 9,000 have been killed in Syria over the past year, according to UN estimates.