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Arab League Ministers Assess Syria Mission in Cairo Meet

Al-Manar | January 8, 2012

Arab League foreign ministers gathered Sunday to discuss and assess their Syria mission amid a wide criticism for their performance.

The ministerial committee on Syria was to meet in Cairo, where the Arab League has its headquarters, to be briefed by the head of the mission, General Mohammed Ahmed Mustafa al-Dabi, according to AFP.

The Arab League ruled out considering a withdrawal of observers. “The option of suspending the monitors’ mission is not on the table and the mission will continue as more Arab nations are sending experts to join the mission,” the League said.

The head of the League will recommend beefing up the mission, which currently has 165 observers, said Ali Erfan, a senior adviser to the Arab League chief. Arab League officials have consulted with the United Nations about the situation in Syria, he said.

Led by Qatar, an Arab League committee on Sunday was to review a report about the mission.

Dabi, a Sudanese former military intelligence chief, said it was too early to judge the mission. “This is the first time that the Arab League has carried out such a mission,” he told Britain’s Observer in an interview. “But it has only just started, so I have not had enough time to form a view.”

The Arab League has admitted to “mistakes” but defended the mission, saying it had secured the release of prisoners and the withdrawal of tanks from cities. It said rather than pull out, it planned to send more observers. “No plan to withdraw the observers is on the agenda of the Arab ministerial committee meeting on Syria,” the bloc’s deputy secretary general, Adnan Issa, told AFP on Saturday.

Sunday’s meeting comes as heavy clashes broke out before dawn between the Syrian army and deserters, leaving 11 of its soldiers dead, according to human rights activists.

January 8, 2012 - Posted by | Aletho News

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