A Syrian opposition activist has raised the flag of independence in Damascus as a fragile ceasefire came into force, more than a year after a brutal crackdown against anti-government protesters began.
The Revolution Leadership Council of Damascus, a Syrian opposition network, said the "act of protest" took place in the capital on Thursday, hours after regime forces appeared to standby a UN-agreed ceasefire.
But a spokesperson for the group told The Huffington Post UK the ceasefire plan was not serious about the ceasefire and they had "at least eight people down today".
"It [the flag raising] happened today in Damascus at the outskirts, and it happened as an act of protest against the regime.
"The ceasefire plan doesn’t have a heavy weight on the ground because we know the regime didn’t abide by it. We have at least 8 people down today which prove that the regime is not very much serious about it," the spokesperson said.
Kofi Annan, envoy to the UN and Arab League, who negotiated the ceasefire, told the Security Council on Thursday afternoon that Syria had not fully cooperated with his peace plan and the ceasefire was fragile.
"Syria is apparently experiencing a rare moment of calm on the ground," he said on Thursday, amid reports from activists of shelling in Homs and more deaths from government forces.
The activist's video, which The Huffington Post UK has not been able not independently verify, shows a dissident climbing onto a pole next to a busy street holding the flag.
He says the date - 12 April - in Arabic and the that they have raised the flag of independence. He then says they group are revolutionaries of "Hay Al-Qadem" and slides down the poll, after the flag has been placed.
Earlier today the Avaaz network said that four separate violations of the ceasefire had been recorded.
It said that shelling was recorded after the deadline in the Al Zalah area of the Damascus suburbs. Shells were also said to have fallen on a mountain close to Hama and onto residential neighbourhoods in the city.
It also reported that machine-gun fire was also heard in Hama.
However it said that it could not independently verify the claims, and said no injuries or deaths had been reported.
The video is one of several released of the country by opposition groups, showing the aftermath of shellings and violence by government forces.
See below for a section.
Warning: Some of the videos below contain graphic content.
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