Syria suspension shows Arab League 'frustration': Britain

12th November 2011, Comments 0 comments

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said Saturday's decision by the Arab League to suspend Syria showed the "frustration" of its members at President Bashar al-Assad's stance.

Hague, who has previously called for Assad to step aside over his regime's failure to end a government crackdown on protesters, said Britain shared the Arab League's frustration at Assad's "intransigence".

The pan-Arab body, meeting in Cairo, suspended Syria until Assad implements an Arab deal to end violence against protesters and called for sanctions and transition talks with the Syrian opposition.

Hague said: "I welcome the strong stance taken by the Arab League today. "Its decision to suspend Syria from Arab League activity until the Syrian regime stops the repression of civilians and implements its commitments, demonstrates the frustration Arab League members feel at President Assad's continuing intransigence."

Hague added: "As Syrian security forces escalate the violence on the streets of Syria, we and others across the international community share this frustration.

"We support the Arab League in its efforts to bring about an end to the killing of Syrian people. The continuing violence is deplorable and must stop."

Under a deal struck on November 2, Assad's regime agreed to release detainees, withdraw the army from urban areas, allow free movement for observers and media and negotiate with the opposition.

Instead, human rights groups say, the regime has intensified its crackdown, especially in the flashpoint city of Homs, where at least 125 people have reportedly been killed since the deal was inked.

© 2011 AFP

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