Monday, 12 November 2012

Doha’s Syrian ‘Opposition’ Meeting Forms New “Coalition of Forces”

Syrian so-called opposition groups have signed an initial agreement to form a new coalition of forces fighting to “end the rule of President Bashar al-Assad”, Syrian delegates at talks in Doha said on Sunday.

"An initial deal has been signed. The evening session will be for electing the president of the body and his deputy," Ali Sadreddine al-Bayanouni, a Muslim Brotherhood delegate, told reporterGhaliouns.

The new body, made up of groups inside and outside Syria, would be called the “Syrian National Coalition for Opposition and Revolutionary Forces”, delegates said.

The group's leader, once chosen, will automatically become the focal point for “opposition activities”, Reuters said.

U.S. diplomats and officials from Qatar have prodded the players over the past week to come to an arrangement.

The parties were close to a deal in the early hours of Sunday after Qatari and United Arab Emirates officials pressed them to agree, but it appeared to fall through when the meeting broke up at 3 a.m.

The Syrian National Council (SNC) had lost the confidence of Washington and other powers who saw it as ineffective and riven with personal disputes, Reuters added.

At the talks in Doha bringing together various “opposition groups”, the SNC had been concerned at being sidelined in the wider body, a U.S.-backed proposal presented by prominent dissident Riad Seif. A source inside the meeting said the SNC had asked to continue the talks on Sunday but that it would be a "last chance", suggesting that ‘opposition figures’ behind the U.S.-backed initiative are threatening to go ahead without the SNC.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian
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