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Arab League Unites Around Syrian Opposition

7:51 AM, Jul 2, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
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The Associated Press reports that, when it comes to Syria, the Arab League is uniting around the opposition:

The head of the Arab League called Monday for the fragmented Syrian opposition to unite and said a U.N.-brokered plan for a transitional government in Syria fell short of expectations.

Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby addressed nearly 250 members of the Syrian opposition at a meeting in Cairo in an effort to coax the disparate groups to pull together. The gathering marked the first time the Arab League had hosted a gathering of the Syrian opposition.

"There is an opportunity before the conference of Syrian opposition today that must be seized, and I say and repeat that this opportunity must not be wasted under any circumstance," Elaraby said. "The sacrifices of the Syrian people are bigger than us and more valuable than any narrow differences or factional disputes,"

He also said that U.N. special envoy Kofi Annan's new plan to form a transitional government in Syria to end the country's crisis fell short of Arab expectations.

But the Arab League, at the urging of Putin's Russia, has stopped short of calling for Assad to go. "The plan, which was accepted by an international conference in Geneva on Saturday, left the door open — at Russia's insistence — to Syrian President Bashar Assad being a part of the interim administration," the AP reports. 

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