In an article on December 28, 2011, Guardian journalist Julian Borger quotes Alex de Waal on Sudan’s member of the Arab League mission to Syria, General al-Dabi :
Many were arrested during his tenure and the Darfur rebels say that his stint in the area was the beginning of the organisation of the Janjaweed. Dabi argues that he was even-handed and that it was necessary to show a firm hand in the face of dissent that threatened to spiral out of control.
Borger reports that the entire mission to Syria is potentially compromised by Dabi’s comments:
The judgment of an Arab League observer mission in Syria has been called into question after its leader, the Sudanese general Mustafa al-Dabi, described the situation in the opposition stronghold of Homs as “reassuring”, despite video footage of his monitors witnessing heavy gunfire and being shown civilian casualties.
The article continues:
The Arab League has defended its choice of Dabi to lead the monitoring team. Observers speculated that his selection represented a reward to the Sudanese government for its support of Qatar in opposing the Gaddafi regime in Libya and in taking a tough line on Syria.
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