Russian President Vladimir Putin promised Monday (July 16 th) to support UN-Arab League special envoy to Syria Kofi Annan's plan for ending the violence in Syria.
Annan arrived in Moscow on Monday seeking to avert another veto of a UN Security Council resolution threatening sanctions against the Syrian regime.
"From the very start […] we supported and continue to support your efforts aimed at restoring civil peace," Putin told Annan at the start of their talks.
On Wednesday, the Security Council will vote on a resolution extending the mandate of the UN monitoring mission in Syria for another 45 days. Included in the resolution is a requirement stipulating that the Syrian military pull heavy weapons out of its cities within 10 days or face sanctions.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visited Beijing Tuesday in hopes of preventing a Chinese veto on the resolution
Meanwhile, violence continued in the Syrian capital Damascus Tuesday as government troops backed by tanks and helicopters clashed with opposition fighters, AFP reported.
"We have transferred the battle from Damascus province to the capital," the spokesman for the Free Syrian Army's joint command, Col. Kassem Saadeddine, said in Homs.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported helicopters firing into the Qaboun district of the capital, where at least eight people were killed, with clashes breaking out in the neighbourhoods of al-Midan and al-Hajar al-Aswad.