News / Middle East

Arab Leaders Call on Assad to Step Down

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad (L) welcomes new Chief of General Staff of the Army and the Armed Forces, General Ali Abdullah Ayyoub, before a meeting in Damascus, July 22, 2012.
Syria's President Bashar al-Assad (L) welcomes new Chief of General Staff of the Army and the Armed Forces, General Ali Abdullah Ayyoub, before a meeting in Damascus, July 22, 2012.
VOA News

Arab leaders are calling on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down, promising him safe passage if he leaves the country.

 

Arab League ministers held an emergency meeting on Syria in Doha Sunday. They said they regret that all Arab and international efforts to stop the bloodshed in Syria have failed.

 

They said Assad should immediately give up power and that the Kofi Annan peace plan should now focus on a transitional government. The ministers also pledged $100 million to help Syrian refugees. They gave no details about where President Assad would settle if he stepped down.

 

In Syria, activists say security forces attacked rebels in the capital, Damascus, with helicopters and tanks, while rebels launched an offensive against the government in Aleppo, Syria's largest city.

 

The activists say government troops used helicopter and tank fire to try to drive rebels out of the Damascus neighborhoods. Syrian state news agency SANA denied that helicopters were deployed. It insisted the capital was normal and said security forces chased what it called "terrorist" remnants from the streets. 

 

Iraqi officials say Syrian forces have retaken control of one of two border crossings that the rebels seized last week, while Turkey says rebels took over another border crossing with Syria on Sunday.

 

Aleppo had been largely untouched by the 16-month uprising against President Assad. It is home to Syrian elites and merchants who have benefited from his authoritarian rule.

 

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

This US Epidemic Keeps Getting Worse

One in 4 Americans suffers from this condition More

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Godwin from: Nigeria
July 23, 2012 3:22 PM
Arab League? Does that name exist, or is there still an organization existing by that name? The last time that name surfaced was when a fracas arose that named Israel on one part. In all the troubles in Arab lands the so-called league has been a friendly woman-trained dog - just friendly even to lick the spilled blood of Syrian civil community. What can it do but continue to cry wolf. Assad has been one of them, so he knows that the body is useless and can do nothing, not even the safe haven they are promising him. Until the league includes Israel - after all a good percentage of Arabs live in Israel - the league cannot be a true League, and cannot live up to any billing except exist by name only.

by: Roman from: Russia
July 23, 2012 7:47 AM
Democracy is a very interesting thing. If country had resoures or good strategic situation then always some countries (especcialy US) want to bring democracy to their people, but when we take poor African country for example Somali or Ruanda, then people do not need in democracy. Do you know about massacre in Ruanda in 1994 when during 100 days were killed more 1 000 000.00 people. Conclision ia simple no oil and gas - no democracy. And what Siria 2009 - two milions foreign tourists, 2012 - two milions refuges. Viva American democracy!!!

by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
July 22, 2012 11:13 PM
Were there any dictators who had agreed on stepping down the position accepting the calling on from foreign countries? Is he so foolish enough to believe guarantee of sueurity after resignation offered by Arab leaders?

by: Anonymous
July 22, 2012 9:58 PM
Hey Assad , here's your ticket. You either leave town and survive, or you stick around and your own people will kill you. What will it be? The majority of your country wants you hung for crimes.

Take the ticket and get the hell out of town, if you are stupid enough to stay, which I think you are is a good thing too. Because at least if you stay when the FSA finally reaches you, justice will be served. However if you take the ticket you will just be a regular proven coward, without justice being served.

by: Romildo Caldas from: Brazil
July 22, 2012 5:47 PM
I am sure Syrian People with help or not, will reach the proposed goals: Democracy and Freedom. It is the logical track of History.

by: American from: USA
July 22, 2012 5:15 PM
LONG LIVE ASSAD AND THE BA'ATHIST PARTY!


by: Monika from: Lebanon
July 22, 2012 1:21 PM
Oh... isn't it wonderful...??? now, how can we blame it on the US or Israel???

by: Anonymous
July 22, 2012 12:09 PM
The world really doesn't have a way to make US and its Europian followers to change their double standards: Pro-US = "rebels" or "anti-government organizations"; Anti-US = "terrorists".

by: Michael from: USA
July 22, 2012 9:43 AM
The Syrian government will probably be depleted from lack of energy. The rebel forces might establish a different government. Prayers from around the world will help Syrian leaders to turn toward proper care of the nation. The 30,000 Syrians can leave Lebanon to return to Syria. Then, later the country could be rebuilt by the best of builders

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thoughti
X
George Putic
May 26, 2015 9:26 PM
Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video US-led Coalition Gives Some Weapons to Iraqi Troops

In a video released Tuesday from the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, Iraqi forces and U.S.-led coalition troops survey a cache of weapons supplied to help Iraq liberate Mosul from Islamic State group. According to a statement provided with the video, the ministry and the U.S.-led coaltion troops have started ''supplying the 16th army division with medium and light weapons in preparation to liberate Mosul and nearby areas from Da'esh (Arabic acronym for Islamic State group).''
Video

Video Amnesty International: 'Overwhelming Evidence' of War Crimes in Ukraine

Human rights group Amnesty International says there is overwhelming evidence of ongoing war crimes in Ukraine, despite a tentative cease-fire with pro-Russian rebels. Researchers interviewed more than 30 prisoners from both sides of the conflict and all but one said they were tortured. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Washington Parade Honors Those Killed Serving in US Military

Every year, on the last Monday in the month of May, millions of Americans honor the memories of those killed while serving in the armed forces. Memorial Day is a tradition that dates back to the 19th Century. While many people celebrate the federal holiday with a barbecue and a day off from work, for those who’ve served in the military, it’s a special day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Arash Arabasadi reports for VOA from Washington.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.

VOA Blogs