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Syria Frees Hundreds Of Prisoners As Arab Monitors Continue Visit

Syrian police used tear gas to disperse some 70,000 people who took to the streets of Homs as Arab observers visited on December 27.
Syrian state media say authorities have released more than 750 prisoners who were detained in the government crackdown on antiregime protests.

The SANA news agency said the 755 freed excluded prisoners with "blood on their hands."

The release of prisoners is one of the terms of the Arab League peace plan aimed at stopping the bloodshed in Syria.

It comes a day after Arab monitors deployed in the country to assess Damascus's compliance with the plan.

The monitors on December 28 were spending a second day the central flashpoint city of Homs, and announced they planned to deploy also to the protest hubs of Hama, Idlib, and Deraa.

The United Nations estimates that more than 5,000 people have been killed in the Syrian regime's crackdown on antigovernment protests since they began in mid-March.

compiled from agency reports