A military intervention in Syria by Arab forces is not on the cards, Lakhdar Brahimi, United Nations’ new envoy to the war-torn country, said on Sunday.
“A military interference in Syria means failure of diplomatic efforts,” Brahimi said in an interview to Al Arabiya television.
“For me, this option is not available, and personally, this will be neither today nor tomorrow nor after tomorrow,” Brahimi said.
The 78-year-old diplomat urged a ceasefire in the conflict, which claimed 25,000 lives since March 2011, according to UN’s estimates.
Brahimi avoided allocating the blame, but said that “the government’s responsibility to stop the violence is bigger” than that of the opposition.
Sunday marks the first day at the job for Brahimi, a former Algerian Foreign Minister and a member of the Global Elders, a group of ex-world leaders and prominent public figures brought together by Nelson Mandela in 2007 to tackle various global issues.
Brahimi replaced Kofi Annan, a former UN Secretary General who introduced in February a peace plan for Syria that was endorsed by Russia, but ignored by both the Syrian government and the opposition.
The Arab League, a regional organization comprised mostly of Syria’s opponents, has repeatedly blamed Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for the conflict and urged him to step down.