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The Boston Globe

World

Syrian opposition leader takes vacant seat

Arab League’s move at summit angers regime

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — To the outrage of Syria’s embattled government, the opposition coalition leader formally took its vacant seat at an Arab League summit meeting on Tuesday and immediately requested broader recognition, including from the United Nations, as part of an effort to further ostracize President Bashar Assad.

The decision to grant the Arab League seat to the Syrian opposition coalition, recommended by the Arab League’s foreign ministers at a meeting earlier this month, was considered a symbolic but important milestone in the two-year-old Syrian conflict. The Arab League suspended Syria’s membership in November 2011 in reaction to Assad’s repression of political protests, which have evolved into a civil war that has left 70,000 people dead and millions displaced.

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