Arab League chief to go to U.N. to discuss Syria


The Arab League chief will travel to New York this week and will discuss the Syria crisis with the U.N. secretary-general and Security Council ambassadors, said Cairo-based League officials.

The May 25 massacre of at least 108 people in the Houla area of Homs province dealt a possibly fatal blow to U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan’s proposed ceasefire, which was supposed to take effect on April 12 but never did.
“The grave situation in Syria will be at the forefront of (League) Secretary-General Nabil Elaraby’s discussions in New York,” one of the League officials said, adding that he would travel on Wednesday, Reuters reports.

The officials said he would meet U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and ambassadors from the five permanent members of the Security Council, namely the United States, Russia, China, Britain and France.

They said he would discuss other issues in addition to Syria.

Syrian rebels killed at least 80 army soldiers in a surge of attacks at the weekend, an opposition watchdog said on Monday, carrying out their threat to resume fighting if President Bashar al-Assad failed to observe the U.N.-backed ceasefire.