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New UN envoy's appointment last ditch for political end to Syrian crisis

(Xinhua)

07:59, August 20, 2012

DAMASCUS, Aug. 18 (Xinhua) -- The appointment of Algerian veteran diplomat Lakhdar Brahimi as the new UN special envoy to Syria is considered by some Syrian political figures and analysts as a "last-ditch attempt" to salvage the country from the quagmire of civil war.

Brahimi was announced Friday to succeed Kofi Annan, who declared his resignation earlier this month, citing incessant violence in Syria and lack of willingness by the conflicting parties to bring a peaceful end to the simmering crisis. His appointment is expected bring new hopes for a political settlement of the Syrian crisis.

Syrian Vice President Farouq al-Sharaa extended Saturday his welcome to the appointment of Brahimi. Al-Sharaa's office said in a statement that the vice president "backs Brahimi's insistence to get a united stance from the (UN) Security Council to fulfill his tough mission without impediments."

On the opposition side, Raja al-Naser, a leading opposition figure, told Xinhua that Brahimi has "many experiences due to his participation in finding solutions to a number of crisis."

He said his group, the National Coordination Body, will establish "quick liaison" with the new envoy, expressing hopes that all parties would cooperate with Brahimi in order to find a political solution that would be conducive to rein the violence.

"We hope that the regime would work this time and cooperate with the new envoy because the chances have become slim, and maybe this is the last true chance to politically end the crisis."

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