Syria's military has complied with some parts of an Arab League plan to stop a government crackdown on protesters, having withdrawn its heavy weapons from cities and freed prisoners, but it's still shooting people, Arab League officials said. Nearly a week after Arab League observers entered Syria, Arab League chief Nabil Elaraby said on Monday that snipers supporting President Bashar Assad continued to operate and "since the Arab League monitors began work last Tuesday, activists say government forces have killed more than 150 people, the vast majority of them unarmed, peaceful protesters." However, despite its apparent disregard for a cease fire Elaraby called for, some progress is being made, the AP reports: Elaraby "also said tanks and artillery have been pulled out from cities and residential neighborhood, food supplies reached residents and bodies of dead protesters recovered." That news came as a band of Syrian rebels reportedly captured government troops in the north of the country, Reuters reports. The rebels reportedly seized two government checkpoints on Monday, despite an order from Colonel Riad al-Asaad, commander of the rebel Free Syrian Army, to halt their attacks while the observers were in the country. An Arab League advisory board has already called for its monitors to withdraw from Syria, because it was giving the Syrian government an "Arab cover" to continue its violence against protesters. The lack of progress in halting bloodshed on both sides won't likely change that opinion.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.