Kofi Annan, the special UN-Arab League envoy to Syria, was scheduled to travel this weekend to Russia and China to discuss Syrian responses to his six-point peace plan, while Valerie Amos, the UN humanitarian chief, complained aid agencies were being denied full access to Syrians in need of assistance. While the regime of President Bashar Assad has been winning battles with lightly armed opponents, it appeared to be losing the war for its survival.

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