The Syrian Coalition denied it agreed to the content of a paper that was prepared in the Italian capital of Rome under the supervision of the Sant'Egidio Community. It also denied it assigned any of its members to attend the meeting that paved the way for the preparation of the paper.
Spokesman for the Syrian Coalition Anas al-Abda said that the “Coalition has nothing to do with the paper, nor did it assign anyone of its members to represent it in the meeting.”
Abda affirmed that “the side with the authorization to approve the papers and negotiating policies of the revolution and opposition forces is the Syrian Negotiations Commission.”
“We call on all parties to avoid any steps that may cause harm to the political process which must be aimed at meeting the aspirations of the Syrian people and the full, effective implementation of UN Security Council resolutions 2254 and 2118 as well as the Geneva Communique of 2012.”
The Syrian Negotiations Commission likewise issued a statement denying that it presented a road map for peace in Syria as it denounced citing its name in a workshop or a meeting that none of its members attended. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
A delegation of the Syrian Negotiations Commission headed by Nasr al-Hariri visited the United Kingdom and held several meetings with international officials. The meetings were focused on the political process and the need to reinvigorate it in a sustainable manner to reach a comprehensive solution in accordance with UN Security Council resolution 2254.
Hariri said that the Commission’s delegation provided the international Small Group on Syria with a detailed overview of the most important and vital aspects of the Syrian issue, including the situation in Idlib, the comprehensive political process including the constitutional committee, the Iranian presence in the country, and violations being committed by the Assad regime and its allies.
The overview also talked about detainees and abductees, reconstruction, the return of refugees, and the prosecution of war criminals.
Hariri said he met with the UN special envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura and discussed with him the latest political and field developments, the outcome of the Istanbul quartet summit, the obstacles to progress in the political process, and the need to revive the process.
The delegation also met with member of the British Parliament Alison McGovern and co-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Friends of Syria Andrew Mitchell. Hariri pointed out that they had an in-depth discussion of the latest political developments in Syria and the United Kingdom’s role in supporting the political process to reach a sustainable political solution through the implementation of UN Security Council resolution 2254.
The delegation also met with former Deputy National Security Adviser and British Ambassador to Turkey Richard Moore. Hariri said that they discussed "the situation in Idlib, the developments with regards to the political process, and the efforts that Great Britain can make to contribute to the political as well as humanitarian assistance.”
Hariri thanked the head of the Syria team at the British Foreign Office, Carla Thomas. He said: "The meeting with Thomas was useful as she contributed to the holding of meetings with other officials and MPs in London." (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
President of the Syrian Coalition Abdurrahman Mustafa welcomed the outcome of the quadrilateral summit held in Istanbul on Saturday. He described the outcome as important as it incited optimism about ending the suffering of the Syrian people and helping them regain their freedom and dignity.
“Our stance corresponds with the outcome of the Istanbul summit, especially in stressing the need to launch the Constitutional Committee before the end of this year,” President Mustafa said on Monday. He pointed out that convening the Constitutional Committee would involve putting pressure the Assad regime which rejects any role for the United Nations in the work of the Committee.
President Mustafa pointed out that the Syrian Coalition shares the four countries their stance in emphasizing the implementation of UN resolution 2254 in addition to supporting the Idlib agreement and trying to develop it to reach a nationwide ceasefire.
"We consider the final joint statement’s emphasis on the return of refugees as extremely important. We stress that such return should be voluntary and in a safe environment and under appropriate conditions corresponding with international law and involving the participation of the United Nations through the UNHCR."
President Mustafa added: "The summit brought together two parties of Astana and two members of the international small group, which reflects an important consensus among both groups on key issues related to the Syrian issue, which in turn will contribute to pushing the political process forward."
President Mustafa called for ratcheting up pressure on the Assad regime to stop its violations of the Idlib Agreement and to prevent further bombardment by the regime forces and their allied Iranian terrorist militias in the region. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
A delegation from the Syrian Negotiations Commission headed by Nasr al-Hariri met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Moscow and discussed with him the future of the political process and the importance of launching the work of the constitutional committee. Both sides also discussed the situation in Idlib following the Turkish-Russian agreement which averted a regime offensive in the province.
In a press conference on Friday, Hariri expressed hope that the meeting with Lavrov would be an "effective and productive" turning point in the efforts to reach a political solution meeting the aspirations of the Syrian people. He stressed that Bashar al-Assad's survival of power is unacceptable as he is responsible for the destruction of the country and the killing of many of civilians.
Hariri reviewed the course of the Syrian revolution since the start of peaceful demonstrations and how the Assad regime forced civilians to take up arms thus destroying the country and committing the most heinous crimes reaching up to the forced settlement agreements.
Hariri said that political process stalled because of the intransigence of the Assad regime and its rejection of the implementation of international resolutions. He pointed out that the Assad regime continues to put obstacles in front of the steps taken to reach a political solution through the setting of preconditions. He noted that among those conditions are the regime’s insistence on having a majority in the constitutional committee as well as the chairmanship and the unanimous decisions. He said that this would risk disrupting the political process at the beginning or in the middle.
The Assad regime is seeking to make the task of constitutional committee the introduction of constitutional amendments rather than the drafting of a new constitution, Hariri said. He added that the Assad regime refused to convene a constitutional committee under the auspices of the United Nations for the implementation of UN Security Council resolution 2254.
Hariri underscored the need to implement the UN resolutions on Syria. "Any credible political process must be balanced and consistent with the UN Security Council resolutions and the Geneva Communique of 2012. This constitutional committee, therefore, should not be separate from the implementation of resolution 2254 but rather one of the steps in the desired process of political transition stipulated by UN Security Council resolutions."
Hariri also stressed the need to "go to a clear road map and a clear timetable as was defined by the Geneva Communique of 2012 and UN Security Council resolution 2254 to reach a political solution."
Moreover, Hariri talked about the Iranian presence in Syria, noting that there are more than 120 areas in Syria under Iranian control. "There are about 123 areas that are under the control of Iranian forces which established military bases in these areas which were previously under the control of the armed opposition. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
President of the Syrian Coalition Abdurrahman Mustafa and Secretary-General Nazir al-Hakim received Jean-Christophe Belliard, Deputy Secretary General for Political Affairs of the European External Action Service (EEAS) and his accompanying delegation at the Coalition’s headquarters in Istanbul, Turkey.
The two sides discussed the latest developments with regards to the implementation of the Idlib agreement and the activation of civil administration in all liberated areas. They also discussed the political process and attempts by the Assad regime to hamper the process in favor of its bloody military project.
President Mustafa gave an overview of the recent visits by the Coalition to the liberated areas and the extensive meetings it held with representatives of local councils, judicial councils, the police corps, and FSA groups.
President Mustafa stressed that the region is in urgent need for effective civil administration as crucial to stabilization, improvement of security and the provision of better services to the civilian population.
"We are working on a number of projects aimed at bringing about radical changes in the general situation of the region by benefiting from the cessation of military operations following the signing of the Idlib agreement," President Mustafa said. He added: “These changes will focus on bringing military operations to an end and achieving a transition to civil administration that gives priority to the work of the judiciary and police.”
Furthermore, President Mustafa underscored the importance of the European Union's support for these projects aimed at improving the situation in the region and helping the civilians settle there. He pointed out that the EU countries are "a true partner of the Syrian people. We expect them to support our development and reform projects which will help us in confronting the Assad regime.”
Tabled for discussion was also the political process in Syria. President Mustafa stressed the need to benefit from the Idlib agreement which was reached through "remarkable Turkish efforts" to restart a genuine political process. He expressed hope to launch the work of the constitutional committee under the auspices of the United Nations next month as per recent remarks by the UN envoy to Syria in his latest briefing to the UN Security Council. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Official spokesman for the Syrian Coalition, Anas al-Abdah, said that the Assad regime did not change its behavior as it insisted on blocking the work of the political process and making it irrelevant. The Assad regime’s latest meeting with the UN envoy Staffan de Mistura was aimed at deceiving the international community by pretending to be collaborating with the UN efforts.
"The Assad regime is still putting obstacles," al-Abda told Al-Hayat newspaper. He added: "The conditions set by the Assad regime are aimed at obstructing the work of the constitutional committee and emptying it of any meaning.”
"The Assad regime is seeking to invest its meeting with de Mistura in the context of public relations so as not to appear as the side that is putting obstacles.”
Al-Abdah went on to say that the Assad regime is also seeking to delay the announcement of the constitutional committee for as long as possible.
The remarks made by the Assad regime’s foreign minister indicated that the regime did not want an effective constitutional committee under the supervision of the United Nations, Al-Abdah said. He urged the international community to "adopt an active position and seriously intervene to put the political process back on the right track." (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
The Syrian Coalition’s political committee on Wednesday began its meetings in the Turkish city of Gaziantep. The committee will hold meetings with the Syrian Interim Government and representatives of the local councils, associations and bodies, and civil society organizations.
A delegation headed by President Abdurrahman Mustafa on Tuesday concluded a visit to the liberated areas in eastern and western rural Aleppo and the Afrin region. The visit was aimed at discussing stabilization efforts and ways to activate the civil administration through the Syrian Interim Government and local councils.
Secretary of the political committee, Riad al-Hassan, said that the meetings in Gaziantep would focus on discussing the latest field and political developments. Tabled for discussions will also be the recent changes in northern Syria following the implementation of the Idlib agreement as well as ways to reactivate civil institutions and provide better services to the civilian population.
"The agreement has forced the Assad regime to stop all aerial attacks on the region," Hassan said, adding that the agreement "has created new conditions that we are trying to invest in the restoration of civilian life and stability for the benefit of civilians."
Hassan added that the Coalition along with the Syrian Interim Government and local councils are seeking to bring about major changes in the judiciary and the police. He noted that work is underway to make significant progress in the National Army project, stressing that these steps will improve the dire humanitarian conditions in the region and alleviate the suffering of civilians.
Hassan pointed out that the meetings will also include an explanation of the developments of the constitutional committee which held its first meeting in the Saudi capital Riyadh last week. The meetings will also discuss the outcome of the first meeting of representatives of the Syrian opposition, expressing hope that the work of the constitutional committee will begin under the auspices of the United Nations next month as per the UN envoy’s latest briefing to the UN Security Council. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
The delegation of the Syrian Coalition completed its meetings with leaders of the local councils and commanders of the Free Syrian Army in the liberated areas as part of preparations to set up civil administration in northern Syria and complete the work on the National Army project.
President of the Syrian Coalition Abdurrahman Mustafa, who headed the delegation, said that the tour on Tuesday included the region of Afrin where the delegation held several meetings with representatives of the seven local councils in the region. He added: "We were briefed on the work which has been done in recent months, the development of the work of the local councils in the region, and the civic activities as well as their achievements and plans for the next phase.”
President Mustafa said that “our goals are focused on developing and strengthening the role of civil administration by all available means as well as working to activate the work of the Syrian Interim Government and the local councils and all other forms of local administration."
Moreover, President Mustafa pointed out that the tour would likely pave the way towards achieving the goals of the Syrian Coalition with regards to the establishment of direct contact with the local population and coming closer to the revolution’s social base. The Coalition is also seeking to have a greater presence in the liberated areas and contribute to the work of the Syrian Interim Government and local councils through supporting efforts to take advantage of all available means to advance the region.
The Coalition delegation on Monday met with commanders of the Syrian National Army in northern rural Aleppo. He said that the meeting discussed ways to improve and develop the work of the FSA groups to reach the highest standards in the formation of the National Army. He stressed that this army will play an important role in the protection of civilians, civilian installations and all Syrian territory.
The visit to the liberated areas, the third of its kind in the past few weeks, is focused on the implementation of the Idlib agreement and utilizing it in stabilizing the work of the civil administration. The visit also aims to advance the work and integrity of the judiciary as well as activate the work of service institutions to serve civilians living in the region. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
A delegation from the Syrian Coalition headed by President Abdurrahman Mustafa visited the liberated areas in northern Syria where it held several meetings with local councils, the FSA groups, and the Central Court of northern rural Aleppo.
The delegation was accompanied by head of the Syrian Interim Government Jawad Abu Hatab, Secretary General of the Syrian Coalition Nazir al-Hakim, and members of the Coalition’s General Assembly.
The delegation toured northern and eastern rural Aleppo, including the town of Al-Raie where they met with representatives of the Judicial Council in the town. The meeting discussed the need to strengthen the role and integrity of the judiciary and uphold the principles of justice and accountability. The delegation also met with officials of Aleppo Provincial Council and the local sub-councils in the region.
Head of the Syrian Coalition said that “in the coming period we are seeking to intensify visits to the liberated areas and to hold extensive meetings with local councils and civil bodies. He pointed out that aim of the visits is to focus on strengthening the role of local administration and supporting institutional work by all possible means.
Mustafa described the meetings as "productive and constructive.” He said that more work needs to be done to reach a strong procedures consolidating all these ideas in the liberated areas." He noted that "he was briefed on the reports prepared by the local councils and the problems and challenges facing them.” He added: “We need to develop and strengthen the role of civil administrations by all available means.”
He also said that there are important potentials that can be worked on despite the immense challenges ahead. "I have touched a great desire for accomplishment and cooperation for reconstruction," he said.
Mustafa said that the Coalition, in cooperation with the Syrian Interim Government, local councils, and the FSA groups, is in the process of activating the work of service and administrative institutions by the local population. "We are seeking to come closer to the revolution’s social base using all the available means."
He also stressed that the implementation of the Idlib agreement, which achieved calm and stability in the region, requires us to provide services and a decent life for civilians in all liberated areas. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Head of the Syrian Negotiations Commission, Nasr al-Hariri, said that the Idlib agreement represented an important turning point in the Syrian issue as it shattered the Assad regime's dreams of a military victory and boosted prospects for a comprehensive political solution leading to political transition in accordance with the Geneva Communique of 2012 and the UN Security Council resolution 2254.
The Idlib agreement between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin has averted a potential offensive by the Assad regime and Iranian terrorist militias against Idlib province.
"The turning point in the Idlib issue was that it represented a challenge to the will of the Assad regime and its allies’ continued reliance on a military solution," Hariri said in comments on Twitter on Saturday. "The agreement has effectively shattered the Assad regime's dream of regaining complete military control and achieving a military victory over the Syrian revolution and the Syrian issue in general.”
Hariri said that “the situation in Idlib today is reassuring. We are working with friends in Turkey and with the international actors to maintain this sense of reassurance and comfort as a starting point towards a comprehensive political solution leading to a political transition in Syria.”
Earlier this week, the delegation of the Free Syrian Army and rebel groups to Astana announced that they fully implemented the Idlib Agreement, stressing that the region has become safe from the attacks by the Assad regime and its allies. They noted that the move would likely open the way for reaching a nationwide cease-fire and the restart of the political process in accordance with international resolutions.
The FSA delegation stressed that the agreement prevented the regime from returning to the region before agreeing on comprehensive political solution under which the regime of tyranny will be eliminated and a transition is being made to a just, democratic system and a civil state in which all Syrians live with freedom and dignity. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)