Assad gets warm reception as Syria welcomed back into Arab League

Assad gets warm reception as Syria welcomed back into Arab League

Al Jazeera reports:

Analysts said Syria’s readmission to the 22-member Arab League is a strong signal that al-Assad’s isolation is ending, reflecting an important shift in how regional actors view the reality of his government’s survival, in ways that are at odds with the West.

Ibrahim Fraihat from the Doha Institute said al-Assad’s mention of the “Arab identity” was significant.

“He emphasisied … the Arab identity of Syria, and linking that to the broader Arab region, which is emphasising that Syria and al-Assad regime here are part of the larger group and the entire region,” Fraihat told Al Jazeera.

The return and welcoming of the “Syrian regime” has also been an overarching theme in the summit, Fraihat said.

“Everyone is repeating … the same message, which reflects a wide acceptance amongst most Arab leaders for the return of the Assad regime,” he said.

Al Jazeera’s Hashem Ahelbarra, who has reported on Syria extensively, said al-Assad’s speech was a “defining moment”.

“It’s the end of an era and the beginning of a new one,” Ahelbarra said, adding that while many Arab countries sided with Syrian opposition, provided significant military and political assistance to the opposition, now, it’s the “reverse”.

Arab nations are “rehabilitating” al-Assad, Ahelbarra said. [Continue reading…]

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