World News Brief, Wednesday November 16

At least 70 killed in latest Syrian protests; Arab League to suspend Syria, despite foreign minister warning against "dangerous step"; Italy bond yields again top 7%; Gillard wants to sell uranium to India; Calls for Burmese political prisoners to be released; Libyan tribal tensions grow after Qaddafi; and more

Top of the Agenda: Syrian Security Forces Clash with Opposition

At least seventy people, including twenty-seven civilians, were killed in clashes between Syrian security forces and anti-government protesters and army defectors in the past twenty-four hours, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. Most of the violence took place in the southern province of Deraa (al-Jazeera).

Jordan's King Abdullah called for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down, while the Arab League moved to suspend Syria's membership (BBC) at its meeting in Cairo tomorrow. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem called the organization's action "an extremely dangerous step" (NYT), while insisting that Syria had implemented an Arab League peace plan to withdraw Syrian troops from urban areas.

Meanwhile, the European Union expanded sanctions (Bloomberg) against the Syrian regime by imposing asset freezes and travel bans on eighteen government officials considered responsible for the ongoing violence.


Now that the Arab League has taken an important step in further isolating Damascus, CFR's Steven Cook asks, "What's next?"

The Arab revolts of 2011 offer the Arab League a new opportunity to pursue necessary reforms, increase legitimacy, and prove its relevance, explains this CFR Backgrounder.

In this Center for Preventive Action Policy Innovation Memo, CFR's Elliott Abrams argues that the United States should work to bring down Assad by isolating his regime from Syria's Alawite and business communities.



Gillard Calls for Selling Uranium to India

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard will move to overturn a national policy that prevents Australia from selling uranium to India because it is not a signatory of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (SMH). Gillard said selling uranium to India would strengthen ties and boost the Australian economy.

This CFR Global Governance Monitor offers an interactive overview of nuclear nonproliferation.

BURMA: The UK's international development secretary, Andrew Mitchell, called for the release of all of Burma's political prisoners (BBC) ahead of meetings with the country's military-backed government and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi.



Italy's borrowing again tops 7 percent mark

Tribal tensions on rise in Libya


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