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UN chief looking for Annan successor for Syria

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August 2, 2012 11:30 AM EST | AP


GENEVA — U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says he is looking for a successor to Kofi Annan to serve as an envoy to civil-war wracked Syria.

Annan said Thursday he is resigning the position effective Aug. 31. Ban says he is discussing possible successors with the Arab League.

Annan has served as the U.N.-Arab League envoy to Syria. He came up with a six-point peace plan to resolve the crisis there, including a cease-fire that was supposed to take effect in mid-April. But the cease-fire never took hold.

Rights activists say that more than 19,000 people have died in the Syrian crisis since March 2011.

Ban says diplomacy is still the best way to resolve the situation.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below..