‘Don’t let Syria bamboozle Arab League monitors’

French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe expressed concern on Tuesday about the conditions under which Arab League peace monitors were working in Syria, saying it was crucial the Syrian authorities be prevented from hoodwinking them.

“The conditions under which this observer mission is able to operate at the moment need to be clarified. Do they truly have genuinely free access to information? We are waiting for the report they will produce in the coming days for more clarity,” he said.

“It’s vital that the truth be established, and ultimately that the regime is unable to hoodwink the observers on the ground,” Juppe said.

The head of the Arab League has said its peace monitors are helping to ease a violent crackdown on anti-government protests in Syria, but they have also urged President Bashar al-Assad’s government to carry out a peace plan in full.

Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby said on Monday that Syria’s military had now withdrawn from residential areas to the outskirts of the cities, but that gunfire continued and snipers were still a threat.

Juppe said the Arab League involvement was very welcome and that he had confidence in its determination, but that the United Nations could not stand idly by as thousands died. Russia continued to block UN progress on the issue, he said.

“We’re now at more than 5 000 dead,” Juppe said. “The UN Security Council cannot remain silent. The savage repression is totally clear, the regime has no real future and that’s why it’s up to the international community to speak out.”

Assad is struggling to crush nearly 10 months of protests against his rule and avoid being toppled by “Arab Spring” uprisings like those in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen.

The United Nations says more than 5 000 people have been killed in Syria, mostly unarmed civilians. The Arab League has called for Assad to pull troops and tanks from the streets, free detainees and talk to his opponents. — Reuters


Study unpacks the ‘hidden racism’ at Stellenbosch

Students say they feel unseen and unheard at the university because of their skin colour

Workers’ R60m ‘lost’ in banks scam

An asset manager, VBS Mutual Bank and a Namibian bank have put the retirement funds of 26 000 municipal workers in South Africa at risk

‘Judge President Hlophe tried to influence allocation of judges to...

Deputy Judge President Patricia Goliath accuses Hlophe of attempting to influence her to allocate the case to judges he perceived as ‘favourably disposed’ to former president Jacob Zuma

SAA grounds flights due to low demand

SAA is working to accommodate customers on its sister airlines after it cancelled flights due to low demand

Press Releases

MTN unveils TikTok bundles

Customised MTN TikTok data bundles are available to all prepaid customers on *136*2#.

Marketers need to reinvent themselves

Marketing is an exciting discipline, offering the perfect fit for individuals who are equally interested in business, human dynamics and strategic thinking. But the...

Upskill yourself to land your dream job in 2020

If you received admission to an IIE Higher Certificate qualification, once you have graduated, you can articulate to an IIE Diploma and then IIE Bachelor's degree at IIE Rosebank College.

South Africans unsure of what to expect in 2020

Almost half (49%) of South Africans, 15 years and older, agree or strongly agree that they view 2020 with optimism.

KZN teacher educators jet off to Columbia University

A group of academics were selected as participants of the programme focused on PhD completion, mobility, supervision capacity development and the generation of high-impact research.

New-style star accretion bursts dazzle astronomers

Associate Professor James O Chibueze and Dr SP van den Heever are part of an international team of astronomers studying the G358-MM1 high-mass protostar.

2020 risk outlook: Use GRC to build resilience

GRC activities can be used profitably to develop an integrated risk picture and response, says ContinuitySA.

MTN voted best mobile network

An independent report found MTN to be the best mobile network in SA in the fourth quarter of 2019.