Arab monitors to stay in Syria despite 'mistakes'

January 5, 2012 17:41

BEIRUT - Arab League peace monitors will stay in Syria to check on the government's compliance with a promise to end 10 months of violence against pro-democracy protesters, Arab government sources said on Thursday, despite criticism from Qatar's prime minister that they had made "mistakes".

Syria, keen to show it is respecting an Arab League peace accord, said it had released a further 552 people detained during the revolt against President Bashar Assad "whose hands were not stained with blood".

The team of monitors arrived in Syria last week to verify whether the government was implementing the agreement to scale back its military presence in cities and free thousands of prisoners detained since the uprising last March.

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