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Syria accuses Qatar of arming terrorists
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Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani
Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani
Syria's state-owned media on Wednesday accused Qatar of arming and financing opponents of President Bashar al-Assad's government.

Qatar's call to send Arab troops to the country "falls within the framework of the negative role played by Qatar since the start of this crisis... through the financing of armed groups," the Tishrin newspaper charged, AFP reported.

The Persian Gulf state "can help Syria get out of its crisis... by stopping its financing of armed (groups) and the trafficking of weapons" to insurgents, wrote the daily.

Syria rejects Qatari call for deployment of Arab troops

On Tuesday, Syria firmly rejected a Qatari proposal to dispatch Arab troops to the country to quell the unrest, saying the move would open the door for foreign meddling. 

The Syrian Foreign Ministry issued a statement on Tuesday, saying that such a move would "worsen the crisis... and pave the way for foreign intervention." 

On Sunday, Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani made a proposal for the deployment of Arab troops in Syria. 

The Syrian Foreign Ministry statement said Damascus will oppose any attempt to violate its sovereignty and territorial integrity and urges Arab nations to end the media campaign against Syria, which is only worsening the situation. 

Meanwhile, Arab League observers continue their visits to Syrian cities and towns, and Damascus says it will allow them to stay longer to continue their investigation of the unrest. 

The Arab League is expected to discuss the observers' reports on Syria on Thursday. 

Syria has been experiencing unrest ever since mid-March, with demonstrations being held both against and in support of President Bashar al-Assad's government. 

The Syrian government says outlaws, saboteurs, and armed terrorists are the driving factor behind the unrest and deadly violence while the opposition accuses the security forces of being behind the killings. 

The Syrian government also says that the chaos is being orchestrated from outside the country and the security forces have been given clear instructions not to harm civilians. 

In addition, Syrian state TV has broadcast reports showing seized weapons caches and confessions by terrorist elements describing how they obtained arms from foreign sources. 

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Last Updated on 18 January 2012 18:20