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Arab reaction to Syria's bloody crackdown

14 february 2012, 17:21
0

As Syria ignored a new Arab initiative to end the bloodshed activists say has left more than 6,000 dead, here are the main positions of the Arab League and its individual members.

AUGUST 2011

- 7: Saudi Arabia recalls its ambassador to Damascus and is followed by Kuwait and Bahrain. Qatar had recalled its ambassador in mid-July.

- 27: Arab League foreign ministers call on Syria to end military operations against protesters immediately.

Arab League. ©REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany
Arab League. ©REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

SEPTEMBER

- 10: Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi says he has reached an "agreement on reforms" with President Bashar al-Assad during a brief visit to Damascus.

Arab League Secretary General Nabil al-Arabi. ©REUTERS/Amr Dalsh
Arab League Secretary General Nabil al-Arabi. ©REUTERS/Amr Dalsh

NOVEMBER

- 2: The League says Syria fully accepts its plan to end the bloodshed, including "a complete halt to the violence to protect civilians."

The plan also calls for the release of people detained during the unrest, the withdrawal of forces from towns and districts where there have been armed clashes and the granting of access to the Arab League and Arab and international media. The repression continues.

- 12: The Arab League suspends Syria until Assad implements the plan.

- 13: Regime supporters attack the Saudi and Qatari embassies.

Saudi embassy. ©REUTERS/Raheb Homavandi
Saudi embassy. ©REUTERS/Raheb Homavandi

- 27: Arab foreign ministers agree on sweeping sanctions against Damascus, including an immediate ban on transactions with the government and central bank and a freeze on Syrian government assets in Arab countries.

DECEMBER

- 1: Kuwait follows Bahrain, Qatar and Saudi Arabia in urging its nationals to leave Syria.

- 26: Syrian forces launch a new offensive against the central flashpoint city of Homs, several hours after the arrival of the first delegation of a 50-strong Arab League observer mission.

A group of young army deserters announcing their enrollment in the opposition's Free Syrian Army. ©AFP
A group of young army deserters announcing their enrollment in the opposition's Free Syrian Army. ©AFP

JANUARY 2012

- 2-3: Calls increase for the observer mission to leave, with activists calling it "unprofessional."

- 14: The emir of Qatar says he favours sending Arab troops to Syria to "stop the killing." Syria rules out any deployment of Arab troops on its soil.

- 22: Arab League foreign ministers urge Assad to transfer power to the vice president. Syria rejects the plan as "an attack on its national sovereignty and a flagrant interference in internal affairs."

Arab League secretary general Nabil al-Arabi (L) and Qatari Premier and Foreign Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem al-Thani (R). ©AFP
Arab League secretary general Nabil al-Arabi (L) and Qatari Premier and Foreign Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem al-Thani (R). ©AFP


- 28: The Arab League suspends its observer mission, a day after the monitors' chief said killings had spiked.

FEBRUARY

- 4: Russia and China veto a UN Security Council resolution condemning the government's crackdown, prompting indignation in the Arab world.

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad (R) meets Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (L) in Damascus. ©REUTERS/Sana Sana
Syria's President Bashar al-Assad (R) meets Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (L) in Damascus. ©REUTERS/Sana Sana

- 4: Tunisia announces it is expelling its Syrian ambassador.

- 7: The six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council decides to expel Syria's envoys and withdraw theirs from Damascus.

- 12: The Arab League says it agreed to open contacts with Syria's opposition and to ask the United Nations to form a joint peacekeeping force.

Kuwait's Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammed al-Sabah. ©REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado
Kuwait's Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammed al-Sabah. ©REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado

Damascus rejects the decisions and continues to pound Homs, where more than 500 people have been killed in 10 days.

- 13: The EU backs the League initiative, while Russia says a ceasefire is needed before the UN could deploy peacekeepers, and France warns that foreign military action in Syria would only aggravate the situation.


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