Former UN chief Kofi Annan will today launch a diplomatic mission to Syria.
It will be aiming to help convince Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad to halt the military offensive that is believed to have killed more than 7,500 people.
Annan will first hold talks with Arab League leaders in Cairo before heading to Damascus on Saturday as joint special envoy for the United Nations and the Arab bloc.
Few hold out any hope that he will be successful, but the Nobel Peace Prize winner is seen as one of the few international figures with the diplomatic muscle to possibly make some impact.
Last night top US Republican Senator John McCain called for US led airstrikes on Syrian forces to end the violence.