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Last Updated: Monday, 6 June, 2005, 12:12 GMT 13:12 UK
Syrian papers urge Baath action
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad
President Assad addressed the conference in Damascus

As the ruling Baath party meets for a congress in Damascus, Syria's pro-government press urges delegates to meet the many challenges Syria is facing.

Papers call on the congress to draw up a strategy for political, economic and social development in the country, including a battle against corruption.

The government-owned newspaper Tishrin calls for "accurate analysis, realistic assessments, frankness and courage to call a spade a spade and identify the areas of failure".

It calls for "mistakes, negative practices, and the growing and offensive cases of corruption and opportunism" to be addressed.

Such cases emerged, it continues, as a result of "the abuse by some people of their positions of power and the absence of a strict, immediate and public accountability".

The paper also hopes the congress will draw up a clear strategy for an "effective, comprehensive and sustainable social development".

It says the congress should find "the best formulas for strengthening our domestic front and expanding political, popular and civil participation in all fields".

'Huge pressure'

Al-Baath, the mouthpiece of the ruling Baath Party, follows a similar line.

Its editorial calls for a "battle for development" and "the consolidation of national unity".

The paper stresses that public life should be "governed by national ethics, love of work and strict measures against violators and negligent citizens in any position".

The government-owned Al-Thawrah turns its attention to the "serious situation in the region and the huge pressure to which Syria is subjected daily through a programmed and carefully planned media machine".

The paper urges "frankness, transparency and careful readings of the situation".

But it warns this should be done "without abandoning the ideology that is based on both the requirements of the homeland and the challenges of the age".

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