UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan is "gravely concerned" by a step up in fighting by Syrian government forces and the opposition, his spokesman said on Monday.
Annan "is gravely concerned by the latest reports of violence coming out of Syria and the escalation of fighting by both government and opposition forces," said Ahmad Fawzi in a statement.
Fawzi said Annan, who brokered the faltering six-point plan to end 15 months of bloodshed in Syria, cited recent shelling in Homs and the reported use of mortar, helicopter and tanks in the town of Al-Haffa in Latakia.
"There are indications that a large number of civilians are trapped in these towns," said Fawzi.
"The Joint Special Envoy demands that the parties take all steps to ensure that civilians are not harmed, and further demands that entry of the UN Military Observers be allowed to the town of Al-Haffa immediately."