Kofi Annan is quitting as UN-Arab League envoy, the UN has announced.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said Kofi Annan had decided not to renew his mandate when it expires at the end of August.
Kofi Annan authored a six-point peace plan for Syria which was intended to bring an end to the fighting.
But the plan was never fully adhered to by either side and the violence has continued.
Ban Ki-moon said Kofi Annan deserved “our profound admiration for the selfless way in which he has put his formidable skills and prestige to this most difficult and potentially thankless of assignments”.
He said he was in discussion with the Arab League to find a successor to “carry on this crucial peacemaking effort”.
“I remain convinced that yet more bloodshed is not the answer; each day of it will only make the solution more difficult while bringing deeper suffering to the country and greater peril to the region,” he added.