photo Tara Benwell Listen to News with Tara Benwell - Instructions:
1. Preview the vocabulary and read the gapfill text.
2. Play the news report and try to fill in the blanks.
3. Answer the comprehension questions by writing full sentences.
4. Use the discussion question to write an essay or discuss the story with other students.
5. Click "show Answers" to see the full text.
6. Pretend to be a news anchor by reading each story out loud.

dateline: 03 January 2012

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Syrian Crisis Monitored By Arab League

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

  • unrest: conflict
  • settle: reach an agreement
  • dispute: disagreement
  • monitor: observe or check on the progress
  • outskirts: the outer or border area of a city or region
  • corpse: dead body
  • crackdown: strict measures taken to prevent certain behaviour

Syrian Crisis Monitored By Arab League

In an effort to end the political unrest in Syria, the Arab League, an organization that attempts to settle disputes in the , has been sent in to monitor a “peace plan” that the government agreed to. The organization claims that its goal is to protect civilians and establish a cease-fire in Syria. According to the Arab League’s secretary general, vehicles are now in the outskirts of Syria’s cities, and some food supplies have been delivered. Approximately 3500 political prisoners have been released by the government, and many corpses have been removed from the. Despite the achievements, protests against the President’s regime have grown stronger and snipers continue to take out . The UN believes that more than 5000 people have been killed in Syria since the March crackdown on anti-government protests.

Comprehension Questions

  1. What is the Arab League?
  2. What did the government do at prisons in Syria after the monitors arrived?
  3. What happened last March?

Discussion Question: Some advisors are calling for the monitors to withdraw from their “peace” mission. This is partly due to the credibility of the chief observer who may have a bias towards the Syrian government. Why is it important to have a neutral observer on a mission such as this?

show Answers

Written and recorded by Tara Benwell for EnglishClub
Tara Benwell is a Canadian freelance writer and editor who specializes in materials and articles for the ELT industry.
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