Head of the opposition’s High Negotiations Committee (HNC) delegation to Geneva, Nasr al-Hariri, held a teleconference with civil leaders in Homs province on Wednesday. He stressed that the Syrian people, institutions of the revolution, and the FSA groups are the principal supporter of the HNC’s delegation to Geneva.
Hariri reaffirmed commitment of the opposition negotiations team to the fundamental principles of the Syrian revolution that were spelled out in the final communiqué of the second expanded meeting of the Syrian opposition in the Saudi capital Riyadh.
Hariri told a broad array of civil and rebel leaders in Homs that the final communique of the Riyadh 2 meeting spoke in meticulous detail about the transitional governing body that was spelled out in the Geneva Communiqué of 2012 as well as UN Security Council resolutions 2118 and 2254.
Hariri said that the Assad regime is now in trouble and must prove it is serious about the political process by accepting the principle of political solution in accordance with international resolutions. He expected that the Assad regime would continue to obstruct the political process.
The HNC delegation participated in the first session of the current round of talks in Geneva with the United Nations team on Tuesday. The delegation discussed the agenda of the current round with the UN envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Head of the delegation of the opposition’s High Negotiations Committee (HNC) to Geneva talks, Nasr Al-Hariri, thanked Saudi Arabia for hosting the second expanded meeting of the Syrian opposition in the capital Riyadh.
In a letter addressed to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdul Aziz, Hariri said: “We express our deep appreciation and gratitude to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the remarkable efforts it made to make the conference a success as well as for the efforts it have made over the past years to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people and put an end to the tragedy in Syria whose enormity has been unprecedented in our modern times.”
Hariri stressed that the bonds of brotherhood between the Syrian and Saudi peoples have been and will always be based on honesty, sincerity, and strategic alliance.
The HNC delegation arrived in Geneva on Monday to participate in the eighth round of UN-led talks due to begin today. Hariri underscored that the UN Special Envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura and the UN Security Council have a responsibility to force the Assad regime to engage seriously in talks aimed at bringing about a political solution.
Hariri told a news conference that the HNC is seeking a political transition that ensures Assad's departure at the start of the transitional period, pointing out that the expectations are low from Geneva 8 as the Assad regime continues to obstruct negotiations. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
The delegation of the opposition’s High Negotiations Committee (HNC) headed by Nasr Al-Hariri arrived in Geneva on Monday to participate in a new round of UN-led talks due to begin on Tuesday. Negotiations are aimed at achieving a political solution in Syria in accordance with UN resolutions on Syria.
Syrian Coalition officials said that the second expanded meeting of the Syrian opposition which concluded in the Saudi capital Riyadh on Thursday was a success as it achieved its goals.
Head of the HNC delegation Nasr al-Hariri stressed that the forces representing the revolution have united themselves and can now begin direct negotiations with the Assad regime in order to put in place political transition in line with UN resolutions.
Hariri told a news conference in Riyadh Friday that the opposition was going to Geneva to hold direct talks and was ready to discuss “everything on the negotiating table.”
The European Union congratulated the Syrian opposition and Hariri as it praised “Saudi Arabia's successful efforts in hosting the conference,” describing these efforts as “instrumental.”
In a statement released on Saturday, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said that the Syrian opposition’s adoption of a joint declaration creating a united delegation for the UN-led intra-Syrian talks “represents an important milestone for the process to move into real negotiations between the two parties.”
Mogherini pointed out that the EU “looks forward to the next round in Geneva with the strong hope that the way is now paved for concrete decisions between the Syrian parties including on transitional governance, a constitutional process and UN-supervised free and fair elections.”
“In Syria, the fighting is not over. The humanitarian situation is deteriorating. Attacks on civilians, as seen recently in Atareb and Eastern Ghouta have to stop. Obstacles to humanitarian access across Syria have to be removed,” Mogherini added.
The final communique of the Syrian opposition conference in Riyadh stressed that there should be no place for Assad and his clique at the start of the political transition in Syria. Participants in the meeting reaffirmed commitment to the fundamental principles of the Syrian revolution and the Syrian people’s rights to regaining freedom and dignity. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Head of the delegation of the opposition’s High Negotiations Committee (HNC) Nasr al-Hariri stressed that the forces representing the revolution have united themselves and can now begin direct negotiations with the Assad regime in order to launch political talks on the basis of UN resolutions.
Hariri told a news conference in Riyadh Friday that the opposition was going to Geneva to hold direct talks and was ready to discuss “everything on the negotiating table.”
Hariri reaffirmed the opposition’s commitment to the fundamental principles of the Syrian revolution and said they were serious about establishing a Transitional Governing Body (TGB) without the head of the regime, Bashar al-Assad. He called for UN supervision of any talks to resolve the conflict in Syria.
Hariri pointed out that Russia's proposal to hold a conference in the city of Sochi did not serve the political process, adding that all talks on Syria should be held under the UN auspices.
Hariri called on the international community, including Russia, to concentrate all efforts to serve the political process according to international resolutions in Geneva under UN auspices so as to save time and reach the desired solution.
Hariri noted that the upcoming round of negotiations in Geneva should be direct and serious as well as according to a clear agenda, calling for all issues to be put on the negotiations table.
Hariri said that the Riyadh II meeting was an important step that had put the international community to the test as there was no longer an excuse preventing the Assad regime from engaging in direct negotiations to bring about political transition according to the international resolutions. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
An official in the Syrian Coalition said that components of the mainstream Syrian opposition had succeeded in reaching a consensus on a united vision and a single delegation for the upcoming rounds of talks in Geneva.
The second expanded meeting of the Syrian opposition in the Saudi capital Riyadh concluded on Thursday evening. A final statement adopted in which participants stressed that there must be no place for Bashar al-Assad and his clique at the start of the transitional period.
Member of the Syrian Coalition Abdul Ilah Fahd said Friday that the Syrian opposition would press for the enforcement of UN resolutions and the completion of the political process in order to achieve a full political transition in accordance with the Geneva Communiqué of 2012 and UN Security Council resolutions 2118 and 2254.
“We stand ready for the next rounds of talks in Geneva," Fahd said. He noted that the High Negotiations Committee (HNC) is yet to see seriousness on the part of the international community to reach a political solution in Syria.
Fahd pointed out that the international community today is obliged to ratchet up pressure on the Assad regime to force it to engage seriously in the political process and implement UN resolutions calling for the formation of a Transitional Governing Body (TGB) with full executive powers.
Fahd stressed the need for the United Nations to condemn the Assad regime and Russia’s attacks on civilians as well as to force the Assad regime to lift the sieges, allow the delivery of humanitarian aid to those in need, and release all detainees. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Participants in the second expanded meeting of the Syrian opposition in the Saudi capital Riyadh stressed that there should be no place for Bashar al-Assad and his clique at the start of the transitional period in Syria.
The second day of the meeting saw the adoption of a final communiqué, in which participants reaffirmed commitment to the positions and stances of the revolution and opposition forces which were outlined by the enormous sacrifices made by the Syrian people and as was stipulated in the Geneva Communique of 2012 regarding the establishment of a transitional governing body that is capable of providing an appropriate environment for the launch of the transition process.
Participants stressed that “it is essential to ensure the implementation of the transitional process in a way that ensures the safety of everyone in an atmosphere of security, stability and calm. This cannot be achieved without the departure of Bashar al-Assad and his clique as well as the regime of repression and tyranny at the start of the transitional period.”
Moreover, participants stressed that Bashar al-Assad and the pillars of his regime committed war crimes against the Syrian people which should be punishable under international law and international humanitarian law. They underscored the need to refer all perpetrators of war crimes in Syria to the International Criminal Court.
The final communique noted that the participants’ goal is to unite forces of the revolution and the opposition around a common vision for a political solution based on the Geneva Communiqué of 2012 and Security Council resolutions 2118 and 2254 in order to lay the groundwork for a transitional stage leading the country to a democratic, civil, pluralistic, political system that is based on justice and equality.
Participants also reaffirmed commitment to the integrity of the Syrian territory and the sovereignty of the state throughout all of its territory as they expressed their commitment that Syria is a multi-national, multicultural state.
The final communiqué called on the United Nations and the international community to enforce the UN Security Council resolutions on Syria, to work immediately and seriously to implement the resolutions on the release of detainees, to lift the sieges on the besieged areas, to allow humanitarian aid to reach those in need, enable the refugees and displaced persons to return to their homes, firmly and effectively implement the ‘de-escalation zones’ agreement, and put and end to the regime and its allies’ violations of these agreements. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
The second expanded meeting of the Syrian opposition began in the Saudi capital Riyadh on Wednesday with the attendance of a broad array of Arab and foreign diplomats.
President of the Syrian Coalition Riad Seif delivered a speech at the opening of the conference in which he reaffirmed commitment to the fundamental principles of the Syrian Revolution and the sacrifices the Syrian people are making to regain freedom and dignity.
"The calamities afflicting the Syrian people are much greater than thinking of Bashar al-Assad,” Seif said. He stressed that “there must be no role for Assad in the transitional phase or in the future of Syria. This view is supported by at least half of the Syrian people.”
Seif pointed out that the people of eastern Ghouta are dying of hunger despite the issuance of international resolutions calling for stopping the bombardment, allowing full humanitarian access, and the release of detainees. The Syrian opposition only demands that these resolutions are implemented in full, Seif said.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir told representatives of the Syrian opposition meeting on Wednesday that the only solution to the crisis in Syria was through a consensus that would achieve the demands of the Syrian people and put an end to their suffering on the basis of Geneva 1 Communique and UN Security Council resolution 2254.
The conference brought together all spectra of the Syrian opposition and is expected to conclude on Thursday with the issuance of final communiqué defining the Syrian opposition’s guidelines for negotiations. A new round of talks in Geneva will begin on November 28, according to the UN Special envoy Staffan de Mistura. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
An official of the Syrian Coalition called on the Arab countries to form an alliance to put an end to the "terrorism Iran is practicing” in the region, urging the League to take "all necessary measures" through the UN Security Council to “curb Iran’s interference."
"We encourage the formation of an Arab alliance that would form the nucleus of an international coalition aimed at confronting Iran's plans and terror,” Ahmad Ramadan, Head of the Syrian Coalition's Media Department, told Anadolu news agency on Monday.
"We should prevent Iran from exploiting the intra-Arab differences,” Ramadan stressed.
In a statement after an extraordinary meeting requested by Saudi Arabia, the Arab foreign ministers said they would ask the Arab Group at the UN to address the UN Security Council over Iran's interference. They also condemned the Lebanese Hezbollah militia and decided to ban Iranian-funded television channels from Arab satellites.
Ramadan added that "the Syrian Coalition welcomes the adoption of a unified Arab position of the Iranian interventions and Tehran's attempts to spread chaos and terrorism in the region."
"The issuance of a statement is not enough. There is a need to take action through the UN Security Council and make the necessary decisions. It should be unacceptable how Iran sponsors transnational terrorism while considering itself above the law without being faced by any deterrent measure at the international level.”
“Iran’s actions in Syria are a stark example of the terrorism being carried out by its militias in the region," Ramadan added. "Since the beginning of the crisis in Syria, the Syrian Coalition has been calling on the Arab League to take action against Tehran’s interference and its plans to foment sectarian tensions in the region.”
Ramadan accused Iran of seeking to change the demographic landscape in Syria. "What is happening now is very dangerous. Iran is sponsoring through its arms the process of demographic change by displacing the Syrian people and replacing them with its mercenaries.”
“These plans must sound the alarm bells for all Arab countries. We believe that the latest action by the Arab League is just the beginning that should continue and develop into more serious and firm stances.”
Ramadan went on: "For the Syrian people, Iran is no less dangerous than the tyrannical Assad regime as the crimes Iran is committing in Syria will continue to live on for decades and will not be forgotten.”
Ramadan concluded his remarks by stressing that “the next stage will witness concrete moves to confront the Iranian incursions deep in the Arab world. The Syrian Coalition is seeking to establish a united Syrian front as part of a larger Arab and international alliance to confront the Iranian threat by all possible means.” (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Head of the Syrian Coalition’s Media Department Ahmed Ramadan described the Association of Syrian Journalists’ gaining of international recognition as very important in asserting the rights of journalists who reject the Assad regime's practices in Syria.
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) accepted the membership request of the Association of Syrian Journalists during a meeting of the Executive Committee that was held in Tunisia on Friday.
Ramadan pointed out that the efforts being exerted by the Association serve the interest of journalism in Syria in particular and the interests of Syria at all levels.
Ramadan praised the efforts being made by all those who work for the Association, wishing them success in defending freedom of expression and exposing the practices of the murderous Assad regime.
The Association of Syrian Journalists was founded in February 2012 by a group of Syrian journalists who support the Syrian revolution. It was officially registered in France under the Associations Law on July 6, 2013. The Association opened an office in the Turkish city of Gaziantep. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Agencies)
The Syrian Coalition emphasized that the fierce attacks being carried out by regime forces and their allies on the Damascus suburbs and rural Aleppo are clearly aimed at undermining all chances for a political solution by violating all agreements in place and insisting on carrying on with murder and crimes.
Over the past few days, dozens of civilians have been killed and wounded in rocket shelling and airstrikes by the Assad regime using cluster bombs on towns and villages of besieged eastern Ghouta as well as in Russian airstrikes on a public market in the town of Atareb in rural Aleppo though all these areas are covered by the ‘de-escalation zones’ agreement.
In a press release issued on Friday, the Coalition said that “initial reports indicated that at least 37 civilians have been killed and more than 200 more wounded in various areas of eastern Ghouta over the past three days. The area has been hit by no fewer than 1,000 mortar shells, 35 cluster bombs, and 130 airstrikes.”
“Regime forces used the banned poisonous chlorine gas on Thursday, November 17 in attacks on the town of Harasta in eastern Ghouta. Assad regime’s helicopters also dropped chlorine-filled barrel bombs on the town of Beit Jinn in western Rural Damascus in violation of UN Security Council resolutions 2209 and 2235. The shelling on Beit Jinn caused many cases of asphyxiation among residents of the area after the bombs released toxic chlorine and yellow smoke,” the Coalition added.
The Coalition went on to say that “the Assad regime and its allies have been trying desperately to disrupt the UN-OPCW inquiry into the use of chemical weapons in Syria since the first day it was launched. They also sought to obstruct the investigation through diplomatic means in the UN Security Council as well as by committing more crimes on the ground.”
The Coalition called upon the international community and friends of the Syrian people publicly and explicitly condemn these atrocious attacks if they are to prove they are committed to a genuine political solution.
Undermining all chances for political solution has always been the only and foremost goal of the Assad regime and its allies. The international community and friends of the Syrian people are therefore obliged to assume their responsibilities to exert real pressure on the Assad regime and its allies to force them to abide by the requirements of political solution in line with UN Security Council resolutions and the Geneva Communiqué of 2012, the Coalition said. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)