5:14am

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

In Syria, Peace Plan 'Is Unraveling'

  • Lynn Neary talks with Kelly McEvers

The U.N.-brokered plan to stop the killing in Syria "is unraveling," as guest host Lynn Neary said earlier on Morning Edition.

Lynn spoke with NPR's Kelly McEvers, who is monitoring the situation in Syria from Beirut. Kelly said that in some places "shelling by Syrian military troops continues unabated." Dozens of people are again dying each day, activists inside Syria tell reporters. The worst areas are in Idlib province, and the cities of Homs, Hama and Dara.

"It's almost as if in certain parts of the country the ceasefire isn't in effect anymore," Kelly said.

According to the BBC, "one group put the nationwide death toll on Tuesday at 70, including 22 in Homs."

As we've said before, news outlets have to rely on reports from activists and citizen journalists inside Syria because President Bashar Assad's regime won't allow foreign reporters to travel freely inside the country.

Under the peace plan, six days ago the Assad regime was supposed to pull its tanks and other heavy arms out of cities. After that, anti-regime fighters were supposed to lay down their guns and the two sides were to enter negotiations.

Now, both sides are blaming each other for the latest violence. The regime says it is battling "terrorists and armed gangs," Kelly said. Anti-regime activists say army forces have been firing without provocation.

The U.N. estimates that more than 10,000 people, most of them civilians, have died in Syria over the 13 months since anti-Assad regime protests began. As Reuters reports, the U.N. is pressing Syria to allow in more international monitors.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.