Lakhdar Brahimi will replace Kofi Annan as the UN-Arab League envoy to Syria


Diplomat and former foreign minister of Algeria Lakhdar Brahimi speaks during a joint press conference with former US president Jimmy Carter following a meeting with Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir in Khartoum on May 27, 2012.



Veteran diplomat Lakhdar Brahimi will replace Kofi Annan as the UN-Arab League envoy to Syria, the United Nations announced Friday.

The UN's department of political affairs announced via Twitter: "#Syria: Lakhdar Brahimi appointed as Special Representative by UN and Arab League to explore peaceful solution to conflict."

The appointment came in spite of a decision Thursday by the UN not to extend its observor mission in Syria after the current mandate expires on Sunday. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon announced plans to establish a liaison office in Damascus, instead, which implies that Brahimi's role in Syria will differ from his predecessor's.

More from GlobalPost: UN cuts Syria observer mission but will set up Damascus office

"The Secretary-General appreciates Mr. Brahimi's willingness to bring his considerable talents and experience to this crucial task for which he will need, and rightly expects, the strong, clear and unified support of the international community, including the Security Council," said Eduardo del Buey, deputy spokesman for Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, according to the Associated Press.

Brahimi, who has served multiple previous posts as a UN envoy, indicated earlier this week that he would not accept the post without a formal expression of support from the UN Security Council, according to diplomatic sources. Kofi Annan resigned his envoy post earlier this month after failing to find support from Syrian parties to implement a peace plan and meeting resistance with the Security Council.

More from GlobalPost: Lakhdar Brahimi, potential Syria envoy, wants UN Security Council support before taking post