| 27.12,11. 10:41 AM |
Ghalioun Says Arab Monitors in Homs but 'Cannot Work'
Arab League observers have arrived in the flashpoint Syrian city of Homs but are unable to do their job, the head of the country's main opposition group said on Monday.
Syrian National Council (SNC) head Burhan Ghalioun told reporters at a Paris news conference that some of the observers were in the besieged city "but they are saying they cannot go where the authorities do not want them to go."
He also sought U.N. and Arab League intervention "to put an end to this tragedy," and urged the United Nations Security Council to "adopt the Arab League's plan and ensure that it is applied."
Heavy gunfire killed 23 people in the besieged city on Monday.
On Sunday, the opposition SNC said Homs was under siege and facing an "invasion" from some 4,000 troops deployed near the city that has become a focal point of the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad.
The observers are due to oversee a deal aimed at ending the crackdown, which the U.N. estimates has killed more than 5,000 people since March.
The mission is part of an Arab plan endorsed by Syria on November 2 that calls for the withdrawal of the military from towns and residential districts, a halt to violence against civilians and the release of detainees.
Since signing the agreement, Assad's regime has been accused of intensifying its crackdown.