CAIRO (Reuters) – Arab foreign ministers will discuss a proposal next week to send a joint U.N.-Arab mission to Syria, a senior Arab League official said on Thursday, after a solely Arab team failed to end President Bashar al-Assad’s crackdown on protests.
Ministers meet in Cairo on Sunday to consider whether to extend or scrap an observer mission sent to Syria in December but which was criticized by Syria’s opposition, faced internal dissent and retreated to hotels for safety as violence surged.
CAIRO (Reuters) – The Arab League chief said on Monday that Russia and China had lost diplomatic credit in the Arab world by vetoing a U.N. resolution on Syria and may have sent a message to Damascus that it had a free hand to crack down on protests.
But Nabil Elaraby said he would continue working with Moscow and Beijing and other U.N. Security Council members to end the violence that spiked on Monday with the bombardment of the Syrian city of Homs, which activists said killed 50 people.
CAIRO (Reuters) – The cases of 40 foreign and Egyptian activists, including 19 Americans subject to travel bans over their work for pro-democracy and other groups, have been referred to court, judicial sources said Sunday, deepening a row with the United States.
Washington, which provides $1.3 billion in military aid annually to Egypt, has strongly criticized the crackdown on the non-governmental organizations (NGOs) which has taken place under the army-backed government. An unspecified number of U.S. citizens involved have sheltered in the U.S. embassy.
CAIRO (Reuters) – Protesters demanding a swift presidential election and an early handover of power by the army hurled rocks at police guarding the Egyptian interior ministry on Sunday and were forced back with volleys of tear gas.
It was the fourth day of clashes outside the ministry, in which seven people have died. Protesters accuse the ministry of failing to prevent the deaths last week of 74 people after a soccer match in the Mediterranean city of Port Said. Five more have died in Suez.
CAIRO (Reuters) – Some of the Egyptian soccer fans who had a front-line role in toppling Hosni Mubarak have a new target – the man who replaced him at Egypt’s helm, Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi.
“We want your head, you traitor Tantawi. You could have carved your name in history, but you were arrogant and you believed Egypt and its people could take a step back and forget their revolution,” the Ultras Tahrir Square (UTS), a group of soccer fans, wrote on its Facebook page.
CAIRO (Reuters) – Arab ministers are expected to meet in early February to decide whether to withdraw a faltering monitoring mission in Syria, an Arab League official said on Saturday after an upsurge in violence prompted the pan-Arab body to suspend monitoring work.
The move to suspend monitoring came three days before Arab League chief Nabil Elaraby is due to meet the U.N. Security Council in New York to seek its support for an Arab plan that calls for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step aside.
CAIRO (Reuters) – Egyptian youths camped out on Thursday in Cairo’s Tahrir Square and vowed to stay put until the army hands power to civilians, a day after a mass demonstration marked a year since an uprising which brought down Hosni Mubarak.
Tens of thousands of Egyptians poured into the square and onto streets of other cities for the January 25 anniversary of the day the revolt began. Although good-natured, the demonstration exposed rifts in the Arab world’s most populous nation.
CAIRO (Reuters) – Tens of thousands massed in Cairo’s Tahrir Square and other Egyptian cities on Wednesday, a year after an uprising erupted that toppled Hosni Mubarak, spurred on revolts across the region and exposed rifts in the Arab world’s most populous state.
United last year by popular anger at Mubarak and his 30-year rule, Egyptians gathering on the January 25 anniversary were in high spirits but divided between activists demanding a swift end to army rule and Islamists celebrating their dramatic change in fortunes after emerging victors in a parliamentary election.
CAIRO (Reuters) – Arab states are appealing to world powers to help end the crisis in Syria after months of failed efforts to persuade President Bashar al-Assad to halt a 10-month crackdown on his opponents.
The cornerstone of their efforts – a 165-strong peace monitoring effort – was thrown into doubt on Tuesday when Gulf Arab states began withdrawing 55 of their monitors, saying they had failed to stem the violence.
CAIRO (Reuters) – The Arab League’s observer mission to Syria is struggling to salvage any credibility as its members start to walk out, the opposition calls it a toothless failure and killings of anti-government protesters continue unabated.
Diplomats and officials at the Cairo-based League say they are frustrated because the monitors had no time to prepare for their task and their mandate was limited to observing events.