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Arab mission in Syria criticised by opposition

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Arab mission in Syria criticised by opposition

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Arab monitors have filmed the Syrian army in the centre of Homs, contradicting earlier statements that the troops had withdrawn.

Opposition groups in several cities claim the army has instead hidden weapons in dugouts and replaced tanks with blue armoured vehicles said to belong to the police.

The Arab League says its week-long mission has helped stem the bloodshed, ensured the tanks have left the cities and instigated a prisoner release.

But a parody of an Arab observer, enacted in a street in Homs, showed an actor writing a pitiful report and releasing a dove of peace, conveying opposition complaints that the mission has been ineffective, hoodwinked and had sometimes even ignored the evidence before it.

In unverified footage the actor eventually addressed the crowd saying “There is nothing to be frightened of in Homs”.

It is impossible to confirm reports as foreign journalists are barred from entry into Syria but activists said ten people were killed by security forces in the city that day.