In this Sunday, April 1, 2012 photo, Free Syrian Army fighters train in a neighborhood of Damascus, Syria. -AP Photo

UNITED NATIONS: Syria's President Bashar al-Assad has agreed to an April 10 deadline to start implementing a peace plan proposed by UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan, the envoy told the UN Security Council on Monday.

The partial implementation of his plan would include a full cessation of hostilities within 48 hours of the deadline, diplomats at a closed briefing by Annan told AFP.

Annan appealed to the 15-member council to support the deadline, the diplomats said. The Syrian government would start by halting the movement of troops into cities, withdraw heavy weapons from cities and start to pull back troops.

Annan also said the Security Council had to start considering the deployment of an observer mission with a broad mandate to monitor events in Syria where the UN says more than 9,000 people have been killed in the past year.

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