Annan demands Syrian withdrawal from Lebanon under Security Council resolution Bernard Hibbitts at 8:14 PM ET
[JURIST] UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan issued a written statement [text] Thursday demanding that Syria withdraw all troops from Lebanon prior to that countrys April and May parliamentary elections in order to ensure that the elections are free, fair, and conducted as scheduled. Syria has pulled its forces back to eastern Lebanon, with some 4,000 troops returning to Syria; however, 10,000 soldiers remain in Lebanon. Terje Roed-Larsen, Annans special envoy to Syria, stated that he has received a proposal for a pullout from Syrian President Bashar al-Assad [BBC profile] that will be submitted to the UN. The UNs efforts are part of an attempt to convince Syria to adhere to the provision of Security Counsel Resolution 1559 [text], which calls for Syria to disarm militias in Lebanon in addition to withdrawing its troops from the country. AP has more .
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