The UN/Arab League Special Envoy to Syria, Kofi Annan, is set to travel to Damascus on 10 March to hold talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to try and end the continuing violence in Syria.

“The purpose of his first visit is to seek an urgent end to all violence and human rights violations, and to initiate the effort to promote a peaceful solution to the Syrian crisis,” said a statement released from Annan’s office.

The UN and Arab League announced the appointment of Annan as their joint special envoy to Syria on 23 February. According to the UN, more than 7,500 people have been killed as a result of the political violence which began in the middle of March last year.

In October last year, China and Russia vetoed a UN Security Council resolution threatening sanctions on Syria if it did not stop its brutal crackdown on protestors.