Arab League chief says Syria trip was for 'reform'

July 19, 2011 18:04

CAIRO - Arab League head Nabil Elaraby said on Tuesday he has visited Syria to discuss the "necessity of reform", but declined to give details of a meeting with President Bashar Assad, whose forces have used force to try to crush months of protests.

Elaraby met Assad as part of a regional tour last week and was quoted by media as saying the League did not accept "outside interference in the internal affairs of the Arab countries", even as diplomatic pressure mounts on Damascus.The League has kept a low profile in discussing the Syrian protests and Elaraby's predecessor only voiced "worry," signaling division in the 22-member body over how to proceed.

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