In a statement today the head of the Arab League defended the observer mission as making progress in Syria, noting that the Assad regime has removed tanks for major protest cities since their arrival.
In addition to removing the tanks, Nabil El-Arabi reported that the regime has released some 3,500 political prisoners since their arrival, with more expected soon. He urged opposition figures to aid them in securing further releases by providing the names of those they believe have been captured.
Recently the opposition has made a point of publicly condemning the monitors as accomplishing nothing, and while the Arab League conceded that snipers remain a problem at the rallies it does seem that slowly but surely the mission is having a real impact on the ground.
The question of how much further impact the monitors can have remains an open one, largely dependent on the regime’s willingness to offer meaningful reform as well as the growing violence of the defector forces, which are increasingly making the peaceful protests very much beside the point.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- US Struggles With Fighting Between Turkey, Syrian Kurds, Two Key Allies - January 22nd, 2018
- Turkey Escalates Attack on Syrian Kurds - January 22nd, 2018
- Syrian Kurds May Send Reinforcements to Afrin to Fight Turkey - January 22nd, 2018
- Facebook Will Use Surveys to Decide What Is 'Trustworthy' News - January 22nd, 2018
- Pence Praises 'the Miracle of Israel,' Pledges Embassy Move in 2019 - January 22nd, 2018