Syria: Arab League suspension very dangerous

Syrian, Russian FMs accuse West of incitement against Assad; Syrian FM says 'Libya scenario won't be repeated."

By REUTERS
November 14, 2011 12:08
1 minute read.
Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Mouallem

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Mouallem 311 (R). (photo credit: Ho New / Reuters)

 
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The Arab League's suspension of Syria is "an extremely dangerous step," Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem said Monday.

He added that Washington's welcoming of the Arab League suspension amounts to incitement, a statement echoed by Moscow.

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'Arab League move will make Assad more brutal'

The Arab League decision comes in response to Syria's bloody crackdown on an eight-month protest movement calling for President Bashar Assad's overthrow.

Moualem added that he is confident that Russia and China would continue to block Western efforts at the United Nations to condemn its crackdown on protesters.

Despite its suspension from the Arab League, a "Libya scenario will not be repeated in his country," the Syrian foreign minister said.

Moallem also addressed attacks on foreign diplomatic missions over the weekend. "As for attacks on foreign embassies, as the foreign minister I apologize for these aggressions," he said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Monday also spoke out against the Arab League suspension of Syria, accusing Western nations of inciting opponents of Assad to seek his removal, Russian news agencies quoted him as saying.

Lavrov also underlined Russia's opposition to imposing new sanctions on Iran over its nuclear program and said nations were whipping up tension over Tehran to impose additional unilateral sanctions against it, the reports said.



Moallem said Damascus was organizing a dialogue with opposition figures and "all elements of Syrian society", which he said were not all represented by the government or the opposition.

"We have reached the beginning of the end of the crisis," he said.

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