Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Homs bit of a mess, claims Sudanese visitor

I'm pretty sure I haven't seen this in the Times: the chief of the Arab League delegation to Syria is the Sudanese general Mustafa al-Dabi, a former chief of military intelligence to president Omar al-Bashir. Amnesty International says this may not have been the most suitable choice, for some reason. The Guardian quotes the general's report from Homs:
"Some places looked a bit of a mess but there was nothing frightening," Dabi told Reuters on Wednesday/by telephone from Damascus. "The situation seemed reassuring so far … Yesterday was quiet and there were no clashes. We did not see tanks but we did see some armoured vehicles. But remember this was only the first day and it will need investigation. We have 20 people who will be there for a long time."
Others have seen a tank or two, and a rather big mess, as in this AP story from which the above image was taken:

Yet amateur video released by activists showed forces firing on protesters even while the monitors were inside the city. One of the observers walked with an elderly man who pointed with his cane to a fresh pool of blood on the street that he said had been shed by his son, killed a day earlier.
The man, wearing a red-and-white checkered headdress, then called for the monitor to walk ahead to "see the blood of my second son" also killed in the onslaught.
"Where is justice? Where are the Arabs?" the old man shouted in pain.
But I guess the 20 observers will be toddling round for a recce just as soon as they've had a spot of breakfast, so not to worry.

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