Following is my English wording of Sunday’s Arab League Resolution 7444 setting out a roadmap for peace in Syria. The resolution declares after a brief preamble that the Arab League Council of Ministers DECIDED:
1. All acts of violence and killings from whatever source must stop, of necessity, to protect Syrian citizens.
2. To request the following from the Syrian government:
- Release the detainees; clear all armed manifestations from cities and populated neighborhoods; give unhindered access to the pertinent League organizations and to the Arab and international media so they can move freely across Syria to ascertain the reality of conditions and monitor events on the ground.
- Withdraw the Syrian army and any variety of armed forces back to their barracks and original positions.
- Guarantee freedom of all manner of demonstrations and refrain from confronting demonstrators.
- (The Council also) calls upon the Syrian government to facilitate the observers’ mission and permit the entry of all their equipment, chiefly telecommunications gear
3. To continue supporting, and to boost up the ranks of, the Arab League observer mission by providing it with the necessary technical, financial and administrative assistance in cooperation with the United Nations secretary-general.
4. To call upon the Syrian government and all opposition constituents to engage in a serious political dialogue under Arab League auspices within a maximum of two weeks from this date, the objective being:
- Formation of a national unity government in conjunction with the opposition to be led by a consensual public figure within two months from this date. Its task would be to implement the Arab roadmap and pave the way for multiparty legislative and presidential elections by virtue of a law stipulating they be held under Arab and international supervision.
- For the president of the Republic to give his first deputy comprehensive authority to fully cooperate with the national unity government so it can fulfill its duties in the transition period.
- For the national unity government to declare as soon as it is formed that its objective is to establish a democratic and pluralistic system (of governance) in which all citizens are equal irrespective of their affiliations, sects and denominations and that the transfer of power is done peacefully.
- For the national unity government to restore security and stability in the country and restructure and reinforce policing services so they can undertake security duties of a civic nature. The Arab states take it upon themselves to fund this endeavor in coordination with the Arab League.
- Creation of an independent inquiry commission, which will be mandated to investigate and clear up abuses against citizens and decide on matters of redress for victims.
5. To direct the Arab League secretary-general to appoint a special envoy to follow through the political process.
6. To invite the international community to give a helping hand to the national unity government so it can fulfill its duties.
7. To ask the (Syria) committee chairman and the secretary-general to notify the Security Council of this plan pursuant to the Arab League resolutions.”