Jan. 2 - Arab League Secretary General Nabil Elaraby says Syria's military has withdrawn from residential areas in Syria. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
Amateur video obtained by Reuters shows devastation on the streets of Homs. The video, which could not be independently verified by Reuters shows widespread destruction in the city that has become the symbols of resistance in the nine month old uprising in Syria. The Arab League has had monitors on the ground to assess the situation. They now plan to send more. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) ARAB LEAGUE SECRETARY GENERAL NABIL ELARABY, SAYING: "So far, the Arab League has more than 70 observers and we will increase that number by 30 more within days. So there will then be more than 100 observers and that number will increase, because the Arab states, mostly without exception, contributed individuals and more are expected." The monitors in Syria are there to check whether President Bashar al_Assad is in compliance with a peace plan which calls for the withdrawal of troops, release of detainees and calls for talks with his opponents. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) ARAB LEAGUE SECRETARY GENERAL NABIL ELARABY, SAYING: "All signs of armed forces have been withdrawn from the cities. All signs of armed forces have been withdrawn from the cities. Tanks, artillery, anything that was present have been withdrawn and is now outside of the cities and the residential neighborhoods, especially in Homs." The United Nations says more than 5,000 people have been killed since the uprising began last March. Syrian authorities say armed groups have killed 2,000 security forces. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters