Member of the Syrian Coalition George Sabra said that the “international inaction has encouraged the Assad regime and its allies to escalate military operations putting increased pressure on the armed opposition on various battlefronts in an attempt to change the balance of power on the ground and consequently improve the regime’s position on the negotiations table.”
At least 6 people were killed and many others were wounded in airstrikes by the Assad regime on the neighborhood of Alsaliheen in Aleppo earlier on Thursday. The Assad regime and Russian forces on Wednesday committed two horrifying massacres in Idlib and Homs provinces. At least 15 civilians were killed and many more wounded when airstrikes hit public market in the town of Ariha in rural Idlib, while 22 more civilians were killed in airstrikes on the town of Alrastan in northern rural Homs.
Sabra, who is also vice-president of the opposition negotiating delegation to Geneva, said that the practices of the Assad regime remain a big obstacle to the political process. He noted that the lukewarm US stance on these practices have enabled the Russians to change the balance on the ground in favor of the Assad regime.
Sabra went on to say that the Russian intervention in Syria amounts to direct occupation, pointing out that the United States has let the Syrian people down as it has wriggled out of all the commitments US officials made to the Syrian people.
Sabra stressed the need for creating appropriate climate for the resumption of negotiations mainly through the delivery of humanitarian aid to besieged areas; the release of detainees in Assad’s prisons; and the lifting of blockades. He also said that the Syrian Coalition continues to consult with the UN envoy Staffan de Mistura. (Source: Syrian Coalition + Alsharq Alawsat)