On 2 November, Syria accepted “in its entirety” an Arab League-brokered peace plan. The statement came after Arab League officials met in Cairo to negotiate a solution to the seven months of violent crackdowns on protests.

The peace agreement includes the release of prisoners, the immediate withdrawal of security forces from the streets and the start of talks between government and opposition leaders. President Bashar al-Assad has been carrying out a ruthless pursuit of anti-government protesters since mid-March.

The UN estimates that more than 3,000 people have been killed in the unrest.

In line with the agreement, Syria will also allow journalists, human rights groups and Arab League representatives to move freely in the country to monitor the implementation of the peace agreement.

At the same time, 15 members of the Syrian security forces and pro-Assad gunmen were killed in Hama province by army defectors. A further 19 people lost their lives in Homs when security forces shot at civilians.