Syrian rebel chief asks world to stop bloodshed

By REUTERS
January 17, 2012 13:17

 
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BEIRUT - A Syrian rebel army chief urged the world on Tuesday to protect civilians, saying Arab peace monitors had failed to curb President Bashar Assad's violent response to a 10-month-old revolt against his rule.

Big powers have also proved unable to stop the bloodshed in Syria, where UN officials say more than 5,000 people have been killed and Damascus says its security forces have lost 2,000 dead.

Riad al-Asaad, a Turkish-based leader of the rebel Free Syrian Army, called for international intervention to replace the Arab observer mission, which has only days to run.

"The Arab League and their monitors failed in their mission and though we respect and appreciate our Arab brothers for their efforts, we think they are incapable of improving conditions in Syria or resisting this regime," he told Reuters by telephone.

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