Syrian dissidents looking for more aid

Syrian dissidents looking for more aid

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Syrian dissidents looking for more aid

Syrian dissident Salih says they lack financial aid from Western countries. DAILY NEWS photo, Emrah GÜREL

The Syrian opposition has received three million euros of international financial aid, mainly from the Gulf countries, up to now, according to Khaled Salih, Executive Committee member of the biggest opposition bloc, the Syrian National Council (SNC). Salih added that he expected other countries to keep their promises for financial support.

“This money will start to get inside Syria very soon and it will be distributed to the revolutionary forces inside Syria,” Salih told the Hürriyet Daily News in an interview on 13 June. “We have promises that we will see support from other countries, but we haven’t seen much support in terms of financial aid from Western countries up to now. France and the U.K. have allocated some money, but we generally maintain our talks with other countries,” he added.

SNC helps rebels to buy weapons: Dissident

The SNC plays a leading role in helping the opposition Free Syrian Army buy weapons, another member of the SNC, Najati Tayara, said. Tayara is a writer, human rights activist and teacher who defected after being held in prison in Syria for eight months.

“Our revolution began peacefully, but after five months the ugly attitude of this regime showed itself by killing and massacring its own people. So, on our road to freedom, we find it necessary to protect our civilian people,” he told the Hürriyet Daily News on June 13.

Syrian opposition groups, including the SNC, are set to convene in Istanbul for a unity meeting on June 15 and 16, organized by an initiative of the Turkish and Qatari Foreign Ministries. “We are trying to represent a united voice for the Syrian opposition, therefore we will try to come up with a unified document at the end of the meeting,” Salih said. The SNC will ask for all kinds of international help during the meeting without any condition, Tayara added.