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Arab League deal not stopping killing in Syria

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Arab League deal not stopping killing in Syria


One week after Syria agreed to a plan by the Arab League under which it promised to pull its military from restive cities, twelve more civilians are reported to have been killed in Syria by government security forces, according to human rights observers.

The deaths are said to have occurred in the capital Damascus, the southern Deraa region, Homs in the centre, and also in eastern Syria. Twelve civilian and eight soldiers’ deaths were reported on Tuesday.

The Arab League plan included agreement by Damascus to set political prisoners free and start talks with the opposition, which wants to remove President Bashar al-Assad and introduce more democratic freedoms.

In the Egyptian capital, Cairo, protesters accused a visiting Syrian delegation — ostensibly four members of the Syrian opposition — of working covertly for the Assad government.

The delegation was in Egypt, to meet Arab League chief, Nabil Elaraby, as the regional body readies for an emergency meeting this Saturday to discuss the continued crackdown on protest in Syria.

One of the protesters said they believed that the internal opposition negotiating with the regime was thereby legitimising it, while blood continues to be shed. He said: “The protesters demand that the case of Syria be sent to the United Nations, that international protection be given and a no-fly zone set up.”

Events in Syria are difficult to verify independently because the government has barred most foreign journalists. Syrian activists put the number of civilians killed in the conflict above 4,000.

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