China proposes new initiatives for Syria ceasefire
BEIJING (REUTERS) - China has proposed a new initiative to head off an escalation of violence in Syria, including a phased, region-by-region ceasefire and the establishment of a transitional governing body.
The plan, proposed on Wednesday to Mr Lakhdar Brahimi, the visiting United Nations-Arab League joint peace envoy on Syria, "is an extension of China's effort to push for a political resolution of the Syrian issue", a Foreign Ministry spokesman said.
The 19-month-old revolt against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad claimed at least six more lives on Wednesday in a bomb blast, state media and opposition activists said. That followed the collapse of the latest ceasefire proposal, brokered by Mr Brahimi in an effort to stop the fighting over the Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday.
The conflict has left an estimated 32,000 dead.