Rana Sweis

Mideast Blog

What’s the big deal? The Arab League’s Non-Solution for Syria

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On the surface, the Arab League appears to have successfully negotiated a deal with Syrian President Bashar Assad to end his bloody eight-month crackdown on largely peaceful protesters. But appearances are always deceiving, especially when the subject is the regime in Damascus, which has found endless ways to perpetuate itself, and the chief broker of the deal is a perennially ineffectual pan-Arabist dinosaur.On Wednesday, the Arab League announced from its Cairo headquarters that Syria had accepted the agreement without reservations. The pact calls on Assad to withdraw his security forces from the streets, stop violence, free all political detainees, hold a national dialogue with the opposition within two weeks and allow the media, the Arab League and international monitors access to the closed country. "The agreement is clear," Qatar's Foreign Minister, Jassem bin Hamad, said at a press conference in Cairo. "We are very happy that we have reached an agreement and will be happier when it is implemented."... Read More

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Mideast Blog

A Chill on Tahrir Square

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CAIRO A cool breeze wafts along the streets of Cairo these days and the North African sun has become a tamer, gentler creature. But this sleepless city now beats to a more unsettling rhythm.Much of the unease is fed by fear of the unknown that febrile political playground, in which new parties proliferate, filling the air with their Much of the unease is fed by fear of the unknown that febrile political playground, in which new parties proliferate, filling the air with their... Read More

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