Arab League Halts Syria Mission; 9 More Dead

UN working on resolution, but Russia is balking
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 28, 2012 9:50 AM CST
A Syrian government supporter holds a sign in front of pictures of President Bashar al-Assad during a pro-regime rally in Damascus Saturday.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – The Arab League observers sent to Syria to observe the nation's violence say they can't continue ... because the country is too violent. The league formally suspended its mission today, reports al-Jazeera.The move isn't a surprise: The mission was widely panned as ineffective, and some participating nations already had bailed. The 100 observers will stay in Damascus for now until the Arab League figures out its next move.

Attention now turns to the UN, where the Security Council has begun negotiations on some kind of resolution to put pressure on Bashar al-Assad. Russia opposes sanctions, however, so the result may not have much teeth. In the meantime, the violence goes on, reports AP: Clashes between the army and defectors left at least nine dead today, on top of the approximately 70 people killed in the two previous days. (Read more Syria stories.)

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