Tuesday, August 14, 2012

8/13/12
The US, Britain and France are scrambling to retain their influence with Syrian opposition groups amid fears that most support from the Gulf states has been diverted towards extremist Islamic groups.

Rising concern that an increasingly sectarian civil war could spread across the region, combined with reports of brutality by some opposition groups, and evidence that the best-organised and best-funded rebel groups are disproportionately Salafist (militant Sunni fundamentalists), has triggered an urgent policy change in western capitals.

Washington, London and Paris now agree that efforts to encourage a unified opposition around the exile-led Syrian National Council (SNC) have failed, and are now seeking to cultivate more direct links with internal Syrian groups.
2/24/12
FP
Representatives from Syria's internal opposition groups will not be at the conference. One administration official told The Cable that Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford had urged in internal discussions that opposition council leaders from Damascus and Homs be included in the Tunis meeting but ultimately they were not invited.
Daily Star
A Syria-based opposition group said it was boycotting the international "Friends of Syria" meeting being held on Friday in Tunis on the future of the country, complaining of exclusion and fearing escalated militarization.

The National Coordination Committee for Democratic Change (NCCDC) denounced what it described as attempts to leave the door open to militarize the uprising against the regime of Bashar Assad, and for foreign military intervention.

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