Syrian Coalition: HRW Report Disregards Syrian Opposition Efforts in Liberated Areas
The Syrian Coalition is critical of the Human Rights Watch’s report which overlooked “the tireless and persistent efforts of its offices in collaboration with the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the Free Syrian Army and the local councils to establish security and rule of law in the liberated areas, in which the infrastructure has been destroyed by Assad and left with no institutions to manage internal affairs.” Assad destroyed institutions to create chaos and lawlessness in liberated areas, according to a Syrian Coalition statement. On the other hand, the Syrian Coalition profusely reject “any breach of international humanitarian laws, regardless of who commits the violation, and stress that they will confront all reports stating human rights have been violated.” The Syrian Coalition statement vowed to hold all those who participated in or supported violations accountable,” stressing that the “accountability will not be of only regime forces but also of all those who claim to be fighting under the banner of the revolution.” The Syrian Coalition statement comes in response to the organization’s report, which condemns the violent behavior of some groups inside Syria. In the same context, it is part of the Syrian Coalition’s continued efforts to organize security services in liberated areas to prevent any breach of conduct by impostors sent by the regime to destroy the revolution. The Prime Minister of the interim government, Dr. Ahmad Tomah, announced today that his government is ready to lead as soon as the international community makes a serious decision to rid the world of the Assad regime. He points out that “he has come close to finishing the formation of his government, and he will announce the names of his Ministers after Eid Ul Adha and present them to the Syrian Coalition’s General Assembly meeting on the October 25th for a vote of confidence and to start the interim government’s work. (Source: Coalition)
The Syrian National Peace Council Condemns the al Thiyabiya and al Husseiniya Massacres and Assad’s Attempts to Start Civil War
The Syrian National Peace Council in the Syrian Coalition condemn the “criminal acts practiced by the terrorist Hezbollah militias and the Abu al Fadl al Abbas brigade who support Assad forces”, and who committed the horrific massacre of 120 people in al Thiyabiya and al Husseiniya in the rural Damascus. The Syrian Council state “that Assad ,through Iranian and Hezbollah militias is trying to effect Syrian peoples’ thinking to create sectarian feelings leading the country into hell.” The Syrian National Peace Council request the international community “not to buy the regime’s propaganda in efforts to split up national unity among the Syrian people. Furthermore, Assad is trying to create a situation ripe for killing by Hezbollah militias and the Assad forces.” The council calls the international community to “continue to recognize the revolution which is not solely based on the usage of chemical weapons, and to not use the Syrian citizen as a bargaining chip in political exchanges to shore up accounts of international figures or governments of large nations.” The Council commented on the international efforts to dismantle the chemical weapons but ignoring the continued bloodletting of the Syrian people saying, “the al Thiyabiya and al Husseiniya massacres are evidence that the problem is not with the type of weapons but with the person using the weapons.” (Source: Syrian Coalition)
Tomah Announces Interim Government Ready to Go: Unsatisfied with International Response on Recent Massacre.
The President of the Interim Government, Ahmad Tomah, expressed his dissatisfaction with the international community’s negative attitude towards the massacres committed by Assad and the terrorist Hezbollah militia against unarmed civilians in Syria. He expresses that Syrians are having difficulty in the international community’s position, as they are witnessing murder and destruction and doing nothing. Tomah said, “The international community has betrayed us, delayed a political solution and this will open the door for bigger problems that will arise in Syrian society.” Tomah announced his readiness to take the reins once the international community decides to oust Assad from power. Furthermore, Tomah pointed out that, “ISIS does not have the popular support in Syria to protect them.” Tomah closed with announcing that “he was close to finishing the formation of the interim government, stating that he would announce the names of his ministers after Eid Ul Adha and present them at the Syrian Coalition meeting on October 25th of this month to get the confidence needed and to begin with the government’s work. The Prime Minister discussed the likelihood of recognition for the interim government from the Friends of Syria Group and support they would provide the interim government. He also confirmed the interim government’s role in the Geneva conference being a powerful card that strengthens the Syrian Coalition and other revolutionary groups’ positions during negotiations. PM Tomah added that he is constantly seeking to consult with the revolutionary and civilian powers. He described some of the difficulties faced by the government and recent developments near the northern border, and the plan to overcome these difficulties. Tomah guarantees government commitments from Friends of Syria nations who will provide funding for the operation of the interim government, as well the studied plans for the management of liberated areas. “This is an austere government aimed at working and not gaining celebrity.” The Prime Minister also confirmed that the names circulating are possibilities for ministerial positions were incorrect. He does not accept any force from parties, adding that “he will not tolerate any demands from any official source, whether it is a western or Arab nation containing any sort of demand.” Tomah closed by saying, “I have not finished my consultations with the political blocs and powers,” adding, “I will not be able to finish my consultations in the time provided and I request more time for consultations, because I cannot present a trustworthy government without consulting with all national, political, and revolutionary groups.” (Source:Syrian Coalition)
Ghalioun: Geneva Decision in Revolutionaries’ Hands: Any American–Iranian Dialogue is Dangerous for Revolution
The Syrian Coalition member Burhan Ghalioun confirms that “the American–Iranian dialogue forms a big great to the Arabs in general and Syria in specific.” George Sabra also confirmed this to the Syrian Coalition Media Office in an exclusive interview during which he asked, “Will the Syrian people continue pay with more blood,” in exchange for what he called the exchange of “understanding between America and Iran about the Syrian chemical weapons file.” He added, “Does the international community not recognize until now that in spite of the repeated massacres committed by the Assad regime and the sectarian militias that support him, the Syrian people will not back down from their demands to topple the regime and achieving freedom.” Ghalioun considered that Geneva 2 was in the hands of the revolutionaries and “there is no gravity for Geneva prior to talks about nominating Bashar al Assad for a new period of presidency.” Ghalioun confirmed, “Convening Geneva 2 is just a dream if there are no guarantees of applying the Geneva 1 conference,” which implies the transfer of authority to an interim government and that there is no place for Bashar al Assad or his cronies in the upcoming government. Ghalioun considered Bashar al Assad’s agreement to dismantle the chemical weapons a shameful surrender and an escape from a regime who boasts, for the last 50 years, of possessing power shifting strategic weapons that could be used against the Israeli enemy.” Ghalioun commented that “there is lack of serious assistance offered to the Free Syrian Army, and that it is difficult for the international community to request Bashar al Assad to back down from his main request of remaining in power.” The Syrian Coalition member added, “We were hoping that the operation of disarmament would be coupled with steps to hold the criminals accountable and forcing them to give in to the international will of starting a democratic transition in Syria”. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
Saudi Accepts 12,000 Syrian Pilgrims: Head of the Hajj Committee Holds Regime Responsible For Preventing People From Attending Hajj.
Head of the Hajj Committee, Muhamad Abu al Khayr Shukri states that the Saudi government will accept 12,000 pilgrims however, it should be noted that the number of Syrian Hajj pilgrims this year is 6,500 Syrians. This is a result of the difficult circumstances witnessed by the Syrian people due to the military operations conducted by the Assad regime in Syrian cities. He added, “Saudi embassies and consulates in neighboring countries will not grant Hajj visas to individuals or organizations except by way of the Syrian Coalition office. He explained that the Syrian pilgrims were coming by way of Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, and liberated areas such as Idlib, Aleppo, al Raqqa, and Deir Ezzor; they would travel by bus to nearby countries and from there go to the KSA. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
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22 Fallen Heroes today and 163 Dead Yesterday
163 heroes died in Syria yesterday, Local Coordination Committees in Syria documented 22 dead by 6pm this evening, among them one child. Also, there were 12 killed in rural Damascus and Damascus proper, four in Aleppo, three in Daraa, two in Idlib, and one in Homs.
(Source: Local Coordination Committees)
Mortar Shells Fall in Damascus Killing 8 Year Old Girl
An 8 year old child was killed due to the falling of a mortar shell near the Dar al Salam school in the capital Damascus. An unknown number of people also received injuries as well as the burning of a number of cars in the area. At the same time besieged for more than a year, al Yarmouk camp witnessed severe shelling with rockets and heavy artillery injuring many people and collapsing many residential buildings. Shelling continued on the town of Mudeera in the Damascus countryside taking the lives of four people.
(Source: Local Coordination Committee + Syrian Coalition)
Regime Forces Targets Civilians in al Sfeira
Assad regime forces targeted a vehicle transporting civilians escaping from al Sfeira in rural Aleppo, resulting in the deaths of four civilians and the injury of others. It should be noted that the town is witnessing a large migration of people during the ongoing shelling from regime fighter jets, in preparation for a raid on the town according to activists. Also, areas around the Kwayres Military Airport witnessed shelling during which the Free Syrian Army was targeted with explosive barrels and heavy machine guns after they failed to break the siege on the airport. In the rural Idlib regime forces dropped explosive barrels on civilians in Kafr Nabl, considered the most important peaceful revolutionary centers in the area. This resulted in the injury of many people and the destruction of many civilian residential homes.
(Source: Local Coordination Committees + Shaam News Network + Syria Coalition)
FSA Eliminates 37 Hezbollah and Abu al Fadl al Abbas Terrorists
The Free Syrian Army eliminated 37 Hezbollah militia soldiers and Abu al Fadl al Abbas Battalion soldiers after fierce clashes in al Husseiniya and al Thiyabiya in the rural Damascus. This is where these two groups committed horrific massacres recently, slaughtering 120 people with knives and live gun fire, among them six children and many women. Member of the Syrian Coalition, George Sabra, described it as “a clear sign of the regime and his cronies’, in Iran and al Malki, sectarian positions.” (Source: Syrian Coalition + Local Coordination Committees)
The Regime Launches Rocket on Teeba in Daraa
Assad regime forces shelled the town of Teeba in the rural Daraa with surface to surface missiles resulting in injuries of many people with large amounts of damage to residential buildings. Regime forces targeted the town of al Sheikh Miskeen, Nawa, and the Dam Street District in the city with mortar shells without injuring anyone. Activists added that clashes were still going on between the Free Syrian Army and Assad regime forces around the Radar and Concourse Brigade in the town of Nawa west of Daraa as the FSA attempted to take over the town and protect the civilians in it. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
France Supports Syrian Coalition as a Replacement to the Regime
A high ranking French source requested that the international community support the Syrian Coalition, to make real advances on the ground, and as a replacement authority inside Syria. The source was hopeful about the American administration’s commitment to its position about applying Geneva 1 and its conditions as a main guarantor for the success of Geneva 2, which the countries are working towards. Sources with information added that Paris seeks to coordinate with Saudi Arabia to identify the demands and strategies that should be adopted before convening the Geneva conference. Along the same lines, Hisham Marwa, a member of the Legal Committee of the Syrian Coalition, confirmed that the Syrian Coalition would not attend the Geneva 2 conference in the absence of serious political interest in dealing with the Syrian file. He added that “the Syrian Coalition cannot be a way to legitimize the remainder of Assad and those who support him.” The member of the Legal Committee of the Coalition said “the international community was not thinking logically when dealing with the legal terms and concepts with respect to Geneva 1.” He pointed out Article VI of Geneva 1 which “denotes a mandatory transfer of power from one authority to another authority”, which points to the forcing of Assad’s handing over power to another authority. He noted that “the transfer of power requires two different authorities, which in the ABC’s of legal terminology, means that Bashar al Assad has removed himself from the principles of Geneva, which would be reasonable to be blind to or to ignore.” Marwa considered it unacceptable for Iran to participate in Geneva “because it is a part of the problem and participated in killing Syrian people; it is considered as an occupying force on Syrian land and impossible to negotiate with the occupier” in regards to the Syrian issue. (Source: al Hayat)
Sabra Mocks the International Decision to Capture the Chemical Weapons and Let the Criminals Go Free as OPCW wins Nobel Peace Prize
The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons won the Nobel Peace Prize for implementing a charter for the prohibition of chemical weapons which was published in 1997 and signed by 189 nations. Inspectors from the organization are currently in Syria to search for Chemical Weapons and start dismantling the Syrian chemical weapons arsenal, this comes as a result of the Security Council’s decision due to the chemical weapons attack by Assad forces on Damascus and its countryside which claimed the lives of more than 1400 people. In an exclusive interview with the Syrian National Coalition Media Office, Syrian Coalition member George Sabra mocked the international community’s decision, which he described as “capturing the chemical weapons”, asking, “who are the chemical weapons so we can capture them and let Bashar al Assad go, who is considered the only criminal responsible for what is happening on the ground.” He pointed out that “the massacres in al Thiyabiya and al Husseiniya, in which sectarian militias supporting Assad troops, slaughtered unarmed women and children, is evidence that takes a sane person out of his mind, because it is not about the weapons used but about the criminal himself.” (Source: al Jazeera)