Syria’s two largest opposition groups sign draft to unite against Assad, establish democracy
Syria’s two largest opposition groups signed an agreement on setting up a democracy after President Bashar Assad’s regime falls, opposition figures said Saturday.
The move is so far the most serious by the fractured opposition to unite against the regime and shows that Assad’s opponents will accept nothing less than his departure from power.
Burhan Ghalioun, leader of the Syrian National Council, and Haytham Manna of the National Coordination Body for Democratic Change in Syria, or NCB, signed the draft in Cairo on Friday night, according to an NCB statement and Omar Idilbi of the SNC.
Syria’s uprising began in March, inspired by other Arab Spring revolts. The United Nations says more than 5,000 people have died as the government has sought to crush the revolt.
On Tuesday, scores of Arab monitors, who are the first that Syria has allowed into the country during the uprising, began their work on the ground visiting hot spots around the country. They are supposed to ensure the regime complies with terms of the Cairo-based 22-member Arab League’s plan to end Assad’s crackdown on dissent.
Despite the observers’ presence, regime force have continued the crackdown. At least six people were killed in attacks on protests Saturday, including one in Damascus, according to the Local Coordination Committees, an activist group. A day earlier, regime forces A day earlier, at least 27 were killed.