DAMASCUS, Oct. 17 (Xinhua) -- The Syrian opposition parties, especially those in exile and the combatants on ground, seem to have fragmented ahead of the upcoming Geneva II peace conference on Syria.
Different factions of the Syrian opposition started to disavow one another over the shape of the political future of Syria as the opposition and the rebels are divided between Islamic and secular ideologies, as the internationally-backed Geneva II conference based on a U.S.-Russian understanding to politically resolve the Syrian crisis, is around the corner.
Each party is also trying to have more ground to empower position at the negotiation table, local observers say.
FACTIONS WITHDRAW FROM OPPOSITION COALITION
On Thursday, about 70 rebel factions in the southern province of Daraa withdrew recognition of the Western-backed Syrian National Coalition (SNC), the main opposition umbrella in exile, accusing the coalition of "failure."
The 70 factions declared the formation of a new organization named "The Revolutionary Command Council for the Southern Region."
The recent pull out came just two weeks after 13 rebel groups in northern Syria withdrew recognition of the coalition and called for forming an Islamic front that could group all of the Islamist rebel factions, including the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front.
"The current atmosphere on ground in Syria and the regional and international situation don't give the impression that the Geneva conference could give anything to the Syrians," the National Council said.
The coalition has recently stipulated the formation of a transitional government in return of its participation in any peace conference on Syria.
Khaled al-Saleh, the spokesman of the coalition, said his group had not received any guarantees from the concerned parties about the formation of a transitional government, adding that the coalition will not attend any peace conference if the participants don't discuss the formation of an interim government.
A well-placed source told Xinhua recently that there are more than 150 home-based opposition groups, and they all want to go to Geneva, but with different projects.
"All of them want to go to Geneva... they are presenting lists of their names to participate, but none of them has shown a real contribution to solving the crisis," the source said on condition of anonymity.
INFIGHTING AMONG REBEL GROUPS
Aside from the political wrangling, there has been another shape of clashes; the military one among the rebels in Syria.
Infighting among the different rebels factions erupted over the past few months, particularly after the superpowers said the Geneva conference is likely to be held by mid-November.
Local analysts believe the infighting among the rebels reflects the conflict between their regional sponsors as each regional player is trying to boast its subordinate on ground.
They said that Qatar and Turkey are supporting the Free Syrian Army (FSA), which advocates "moderate" views, while Saudi Arabia backs the radical Nusra Front and other hard-line Islamist factions.
The infighting has emerged notably in northern Syria, mainly in Aleppo and Hasaka provinces, between the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and Kurdish armed committees as well as the FSA.
On Wednesday, as many as 41 combatants were killed during clashes between the Kurdish armed committees and the ISIL, according to the activist network, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
SYRIAN GOV'T READY TO ATTEND GENEVA MEETING
As the opposition is stumbling to find a way to overcome its disunity, the Syrian government has for long said it was ready to partake in the upcoming conference but doesn't hide skepticism over the conference success.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, while casting doubt over the commencement of the Geneva talks, said his government had no qualms about attending the conference, adding that its only demand is clear and based on two principles: to place the results of the conference on national referendum, and the countries that support the "terrorists" to halt their actions.
Syria's Deputy Prime Minister Qadri Jamil said in a press conference in Moscow Thursday that the conference is likely to be held between on Nov. 23 or 24.
On May 7, both Moscow and Washington said they had decided to hold an international conference in Geneva designed to facilitate a solution to the Syrian crisis through political dialogue.
The planned conference is a follow-up to last year's international meeting in Geneva that drafted a peace roadmap for Syria but was never materialized.