Jan. 5 - Amateur video purports to show defected Syrian Army soldiers meeting with members of an Arab League team that is in Syria to verify whether the government is implementing a peace plan. Katharine Jackson reports.
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**REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE CONTENT OF THIS VIDEO, WHICH HAS BEEN OBTAINED FROM A SOCIAL MEDIA WEB SITE** This video appears to shows Arab League observers in orange vestRs meeting with defected soldiers in Homs. Once part of the Syrian Army, the men say they are now belong to the Free Syria Army. Uploaded to a social media web site, the video cannot be independently verified by Reuters. Syria has barred entry to most foreign journalists. The observers are in Syria to verify whether Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's government is implement a peace plan to withdraw the army from cities, free prisoners and open a dialogue with opponents. The Arab League said on Thursday it will not withdraw the observers until their month-long mission ends. The League has suspended Syria's membership, citing Assad's failure to stop the violence. The United Nations says more than 5,000 people have been killed in Syria since March. Syrian opposition activists say the death toll keeps rising as clashes continue. Online videos purport to show protesters filling the streets to demonstrate their anger. Syria says it is fighting attacks by foreign-backed militants. In what appears to be a suburb of Damascus, protesters wear hoods and chant "The people want to execute you, Bashar." Katharine Jackson, Reuters.