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Arab League readmits Syria as relations with Assad normalise

May 7, 2023 at 12:41 pm

Members of the Arab League gather for an emergency meeting in Cairo on April 5, 2023 [AFP via Getty Images]

Arab League foreign ministers adopted a decision to readmit Syria after more than a decade of suspension on Sunday, a spokesperson for the League said, consolidating a regional push to normalise ties with President Bashar al-Assad, reports Reuters.

The decision was taken at a closed meeting of Arab foreign ministers at the Arab League’s headquarters in Cairo, said Gamal Roshdy, spokesman for the Arab League’s secretary general.

Syria’s membership in the Arab League was suspended in 2011 after a bloody crackdown on street protests against Assad that led to a devastating civil war, and many Arab states pulled their envoys out of Damascus.

Recently, several Arab states including Saudi Arabia and Egypt, have re-engaged with Syria in high-level visits and meetings, though some, including Qatar, remain opposed to full normalisation without a political solution to Syria’s conflict.

Arab states have been trying to reach consensus on whether to invite Assad to an Arab League summit on May 19 in Riyadh to discuss the pace of normalising ties and on what terms Syria could be allowed back.

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