BEIRUT: U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has told Bashar al-Assad to "stop killing your people" and the Syrian leader offered an amnesty for "crimes" committed during a 10-month-old revolt against him.
Arab League foreign ministers will meet next Sunday to discuss the future of a monitoring mission sent last month to check if Syria is respecting an Arab peace plan.
Assad's violent response to the uprising has killed more than 5,000 people, by a U.N. count. The Syrian authorities say 2,000 members of the security forces have also been killed. At least 25 civilians and soldiers were reported killed Sunday.
"Today, I say again to President Assad of Syria: stop the violence, stop killing your people. The path of repression is a dead end," Ban told a conference in Lebanon on democratic transitions in the Arab world Sunday.
Assad's amnesty will run to the end of January, covering army deserters and people who possessed illegal arms or had violated laws on peaceful protest, the state news agency SANA said.