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Syria Finally OKs Arab League Observers

Will be free in their movements, but can't access some military sites
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 19, 2011 9:57 AM CST
Syria Finally OKs Arab League Observers
Syrians hold a large poster depicting Syria's President Bashar Assad during a rally in Damascus, Syria, Monday, Dec. 19, 2011.   (AP Photo/Muzaffar Salman)

(Newser) – Syria finally signed an agreement to allow Arab League monitors into the country today, after the Arab League accepted 70% of the changes demanded by Damascus. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said that Syria signing the long-awaited deal was a sign that Bashar al-Assad’s regime was pushing for a "political solution" to the crisis, and said the amendments to the deal would preserve Syria’s sovereignty. The BBC reports that observers will be able to move freely, but can't visit sensitive military sites.

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“We want to ... build a safe, modern Syria—a Syria that will be a model of democracy,” Muallem said. The Syrian National Council opposition group dismissed the deal as a "maneuver," the AFP reports. Iran, meanwhile, welcomed the deal as "acceptable," saying that "many of Iran’s standpoints have been considered in the deal," according to Reuters. (Read more Syria stories.)

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