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Arab League rejects Syrian request over monitors

Arab League rejects Syrian request over monitors
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The Arab League has rejected a Syrian demand to alter its plan to send a monitoring mission to the country.

The League has called for a 500-strong observer team mission to assess claims of a violent government crackdown on protests against President Bashar al-Assad.

At least 3,500 people have reportedly died in the uprising but President Assad said he had no choice but to pursue “militants” who seek to end 41 years of Assad family rule.

“The conflict will continue and the pressure to subjugate Syria will continue. Syria will not bow down,” the president told Britain’s Sunday Times newspaper in an interview.

“The only way is to search for the armed people, chase the armed gangs, prevent the entry of arms and weapons from neighbouring countries, prevent sabotage and enforce law and order,” he said in video footage on the newspaper’s web site.

Meanwhile, two rocket-propelled grenades hit a major ruling party building in Damascus, according to residents. If confirmed, it will be the first insurgent attack reported inside the Syrian capital since the conflict started eight months ago.

The Syrian Free Army, comprising army defectors and based in neighbouring Turkey, claimed responsibility for the attack on the Baath Party building in Damascus.

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