DAMASCUS, Feb. 11 (Xinhua) -- Head of the main Syrian opposition coalition in exile, Moaz al-Khatib, said late Sunday the administration of President Bashar al-Assad is losing a "rare opportunity" by not responding to his recent calls for conditioned dialogue.
In a statement posted on his official Facebook page, al-Khatib said the administration gave a "very negative" message to the inside and outside by "skipping this rare opportunity whose aim was plain humanitarian."
Last week, al-Khatib made a surprising statement by declaring his acceptance and readiness to sit with representatives of the Syrian government for dialogue with the condition of releasing 160, 000 detainees from jails. He also demanded that the negotiations be held with Vice President Farouq al-Sharaa as a representative of the government.
The Syrian government has yet to respond to the initiative, but analysts and some officials said the dialogue should not be pre- conditioned.
Meanwhile, al-Khatib said he made the calls for dialogue out of his "national and ethical obligations," charging that the administration is still trying to buy time in a "futile dialogue."
Also on Sunday, Syria's Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Miqdad was quoted by the pan-Arab al-Mayadeen TV as saying that any dialogue to end the crisis should be held in Syria and headed by Syrians.
Miqdad stressed that the main principles for dialogue should be based on the "integrated political program" outlined recently by Assad.
CAIRO, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- The Arab League-United Nations envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi met Sunday with the head of the exiled Syrian opposition coalition Moaz al-Khatib in Cairo where they discussed the coalition plans for the upcoming stage, official news agency MENA reported.
The meeting tackled al-Khatib's recent bid for dialogue with the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad, whose information minister Omran al-Zoubi said in response on Friday that the government was ready for dialogue with opposition " without preconditions." Full story
DAMASCUS, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) -- Head of the main Syrian opposition coalition in exile, Moaz al-Khatib, said Monday that President Bashar al-Assad has to take a clear stance toward his calls for dialogue "for the interest of the Syrian people" and for the " peaceful departure of the regime."
Quoted by al-Jazeera TV, al-Khatib said "the regime must take a clear stance (on dialogue) and we say we will extend our hand for the interest of people and to help the regime leave peacefully." Full story
DAMASCUS, Feb. 3 (Xinhua) -- Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said his country is capable of repulsing any aggression that might target its people thanks to the strength of its military and the awareness of its people, according to the state-media.
Assad made the remarks during his meeting Sunday with the head of Iran's supreme national security council, Saeed Jalili, who set foot in Damascus a day earlier for talks with Assad and top officials about the recent Israeli airstrike that targeted a Syrian military research center last Wednesday.Full story
MOSCOW, Jan. 28 (Xinhua) -- Syrian President Bashar al-Assad should have moved faster to seek a deal with the moderate opponents who were ready to sit down with him, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Sunday.
"To my mind, unfortunately, the leadership of Syria proved unprepared for that," Medvedev said in an interview with CNN television, adding it was a "grave mistake."Full story