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U.S., EU call on Syria to end violence immediately

(Xinhua)

15:12, November 29, 2011

WASHINGTON, Nov. 28 (Xinhua) -- The United States and the European Union (EU) on Monday called on Syria to end violence immediately, said a U.S.-EU joint statement.

"We call on the Syrian government to end violence immediately, permit the immediate entry of human rights observers and international journalists, and allow for a peaceful and democratic transition," said the statement.

The statement came after the U.S. President Barack Obama hosted European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, and High Representative for foreign policy Catherine Ashton at the White House for an annual U.S.-EU summit.

The U.S. has been long calling for the ouster of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Recently, the U.S., its European allies and the Arab countries have ratcheted up the pressure on Syria.

The Arab League (AL) imposed sanctions on Syria on Sunday after Damascus missed an Arab League deadline to agree to allow hundreds of observers into the country as part of a peace deal Syria agreed to early this month to end the crisis.

The new set of economic sanctions include a ban on transactions with the Syria's central bank and funding for projects in Syria, and a freeze on Syrian government assets in the Arab countries. As further measures of the sanctions, the AL will halt flights and impose travel bans on some Syrian officials.

In the same statement, the two sides also welcomed the agreement for political transition in Yemen and called on all political parties to implement the power transfer deal.

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