Syrian opposition upset with US over reform bid
DAMASCUS / ISTANBUL
Residents wait as a rebel fighter passes by their house during clashes. REUTERS photoSyria’s main opposition group has accused U.S. of undermining the country’s revolution by seeking an opposition overhaul, as rebel forces made important gains in the northwest.
Two days ahead of key talks among the opposition in Qatar, the Syrian National Council (SNC) lashed out at U.S. accusations that it was not fully representative of the country’s diverse dissident forces, according to Agence France-Presse. “Any discussions aimed at passing over the SNC or at creating new bodies to replace it are an attempt to undermine the Syrian revolution by sowing the seeds of division,” the SNC said in a statement on Nov. 2.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton this week voiced frustration with the SNC, saying that it “can no longer be viewed as the visible leader of the opposition.”
Muhammed el-Hac Ali, head of another opposition group, the Syrian National Army, told Anatolian news agency on Nov. 2 that the SNC alone fails to embrace all formations of the Syrian people. The SNC “has difficulties in obtaining weapons and taking them into the country,” Ali said. “Political leaders didn’t make enough efforts. We have the same target as political leaders, but we have different opinions about the strategy that will be followed after the revolution.”
War crime: UN
Meanwhile, rebels faced criticism on Nov. 2 after a video appeared to show opposition fighters beating and executing soldiers. “It is very likely that this was a war crime, another one,” Rupert Colville, spokesman for U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, told reporters in Geneva.
Meanwhile, Nujin Derik, the Aleppo chief of Popular Protection Units (YPG), an armed wing of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), a group affiliated with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), was killed on Nov. 1 by the Free Syrian Army, Doğan news agency reported.
SNC to elect head in Doha
Main opposition group the Syrian National Council (SNC) is set to sign a document on the future of the country in a Doha meeting scheduled for Nov. 4, the group said.
George Sabra, an SNC leader, claims they will make any final changes to the document before signing it at the Doha meeting, according to Anatolia news agency. Sabra also said the SNC’s new leader will be named at the meeting. Meanwhile, rebels faced criticism Nov. 2 after a video appeared that showed opposition fighters beating and executing regime soldiers, Agence France-Presse reported. “It is very likely that this was a war crime,” Rupert Colville, spokesman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, told reporters in Geneva. “We call on all parties to the conflict in Syria to respect international law,” he said.