Syria Criticizes France’s Support of Rebels
The Syrian government accused France of “schizophrenia” on Sunday for pledging to support a peaceful resolution to the uprising challenging President Bashar al-Assad and simultaneously aiding the armed groups driving the insurrection. At the same time, a French doctor returning from a rebel-controlled hospital raised new alarms about the presence of foreign Islamist militants in Syria.
Days after the French government said that it would provide humanitarian and reconstruction assistance directly to the rebels controlling five Syrian cities, a spokesman for the Syrian government accused France of undermining the first trip to the region by the new United Nations envoy charged with negotiating a peace, Lakhdar Brahimi.
“On the one hand, it supports Brahimi’s mission, while at the same time it makes statements demonstrating that it supports the militarization of the crisis in Syria,” the Syrian spokesman, Jihad Makdessi, said of the French government in an interview with The Associated Press. “The only way to make Brahimi’s mission a success is the cooperation of all parties to enable him to bring about calmness and then the political process.”