Syria's president must immediately implement a peace deal designed to end the year-long bloody government crackdown, the U.N. secretary-general said on Thursday.

Ban Ki-moon told the Arab League summit in Baghdad "there is no time to waste" in implementing the six-point plan of Kofi Annan, the joint special envoy for the Arab League and the United Nations.

President Bashar al-Assad's regime accepted the plan this week, but activists and diplomats say violence continues to rage across the country two days after Annan announced the initiative.