Syria’s al-Assad leaves state of emergency in place

Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad defied expectations Wednesday, making no mention of lifting a state of emergency in a national address where he was widely expected to do so, CNN reports. He acknowledged that Syrians want reform and that the government has not met their needs in a rambling 45-minute speech to the National Assembly. But he made few concrete promises after weeks of anti-government demonstrations that have left 73 people dead, according to Human Rights Watch. Syria’s government will not fall like a domino in a string of Arab revolutions, the president insisted, saying that instead Syria had kicked the dominos of the “conspirators” and that they had fallen instead.

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