(CNN) -- Kofi Annan, whose initiative to forge peace in war-ravaged Syria failed to take hold, has resigned as the U.N. and Arab League joint special envoy to the country.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced the move Thursday, saying that Annan told him and Arab League Secretary-General Nabil El Araby that he didn't want to renew his mandate when it expires on August 31.
Ban praised Annan's "determined and courageous efforts" to end the nearly 17-month-long Syrian crisis, a conflict that started when the regime brutally cracked down on peaceful protesters in March 2011 and morphed into a nationwide uprising.
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