Syrian Opposition Seat Deepens Assad’s Diplomatic Isolation

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah blasted the Syrian regime for frustrating all attempts to end the bloodshed through peaceful means.The king’s address was read out by Crown Prince Salman at the Arab League Summit in the Qatari capital yesterday. “The Assad regime has foiled all political attempts to resolve the crisis,” he said.A four-man delegation of the Syrian opposition took the nation’s seat at the summit. The delegation included interim Prime Minister Ghassan Hitto and Alkhatib, who, despite stepping down as president of the Syrian National Council, led the Syrian delegation in Qatar. The SNC presented a number of demands to change the destiny of the Syrian nation.

King Abdullah lashed out at the Assad regime for unleashing deadly weapons on his own people in full view on the international community.On Palestine, the king said: “We do not see any possibility of resolving this issue until and unless Israel government’s policy undergoes changes.”Meanwhile, an embassy for the Syrian opposition, the Syrian National Coalition (SNC), will be inaugurated in Doha today for the first time, local sources said.Such a step comes in the wake of the Syrian opposition taking Syria’s seat in the Arab League during the first session of the two-day Doha Arab Summit. The two-day summit, which was opened by Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, chairman of the current Arab League summit, called on Arab leaders to help Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar.

Sheikh Hamad also called for the immediate establishment of a $ 1 billion fund to help Palestinians in Arab East Jerusalem and offered to contribute $ 250 million toward it.Crown Prince Salman was accompanied by Prince Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah, deputy minister of foreign affairs; Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, chief of the court of the Crown Prince; Ibrahim Al-Assaf, finance minister; and Dr. Abdulaziz Khoja, minister of culture and information.During the opening session, Shaikh Hamad welcomed the forces of the Syrian opposition and revolution and commended their historic role in the fight to establish a new Syria. Shaikh Hamad lamented that the Syrian regime entered into armed confrontation with its people and rejected all calls for serious political reform. The emir of Qatar reaffirmed his country’s commitment to provide humanitarian help to the people of Syria and urged all countries to do the same. “I dream of seeing Syria up on its feet and back to its former glory,” he said. Syria’s membership to the Arab League was suspended in 2011 as a result of the government’s bloody crackdown on the opposition, which has claimed the lives of over 70,000 people, according to the UN. Shaikh Hamad then called for another Arab summit to be held as soon as possible to help Palestinians arrive at permanent national reconciliation.

The emir called for the establishment of a one-billion-dollar fund to provide support for Jerusalem and asked that the fund be established promptly following the conclusion of the summit. Ahmad Moaz Al-Khatib, the Syrian opposition leader, then took the floor, asserting that the people of Syria are paying for freedom with their blood. He lamented the divergent views between regional powers and the international community, which adversely affect the daily lives of millions of Syrians.”These divergent views exacerbate the suffering or our people in Syria,” he said.

“The Syrian people no longer take any international conference seriously since conferences have failed to achieve even the minimal requirements of support for the freedom of Syrians,” he added. Al-Khatib said he had asked US Secretary of State John Kerry for US forces to help defend northern parts of Syria with Patriot surface-to-air missiles. “I have asked Mr. Kerry to extend the umbrella of the Patriot missiles to cover the north of Syria and he has promised to study the subject,” Al-Khatib said.”We are still awaiting a decision from NATO to protect the lives of innocent peopl and return Syrian immigrants to their homeland to lead a normal life,” he said.

Arab News

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