Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Syrian National Coalition Reaction to Formation of an Islamic Alliance

by Charlie Caris

Today the Syrian National Coalition posted a statement on their arabic-language website that contains an initial response to the Islamic alliance, which was announced yesterday in Aleppo and includes a number of FSA brigades as well as an al-Qaeda affiliate.

Below are some key takeaways, and a translation of this statement:

Key takeaways:
  • The alliance that was announced is not representative of the Free Syrian Army
  • The future of Syria will be decided at the ballot box by the Syrian people
  • This alliance announcement was poorly timed due to the SNC’s upcoming UN visit, and will cause dangerous schisms in the opposition forces
  • Al-Qaeda has an “un-Syrian” agenda and Jabhat al-Nusra should not have been included in this alliance. The governing body of Syria should maintain dialogue with all of the signatories to the document except for Jabhat al-Nusra
  • The coalition’s interim government is critical for Syria’s future, and the leader of the SNC is connected to the people on the inside of the country
“Statement from Anas al-Abdeh, a member of the Political Committee for the Syrian National Coalition -

The timing of the statement that the Islamic battalions released yesterday was not appropriate at all, and these signs raise a question regarding the soldiers of this statement, especially because it coincides with a visit by the SNC high council to the United Nations with the goal of gaining new friends for the Syrian case. The battalions that agreed to the statement do not represent the most important of the FSA battalions on the ground, as there are large battalions that did not agree to this statement. There must be information for all that the nature of the future state in Syria is the choice of the Syrian people through ballot boxes and elections, and no one has the right to impose his custodianship on the Syrian people and impose a version of the ruling state or the laws that will govern it. And of course, It is possible for holders of grievances to persuade the people at some stage after the revolution, but not right now. Throwing around such topics and the imposition of a particular variety of the nature of governance at the current time causes the splitting between rebels and generates dangerous clashes for the force of the revolution inside and outside Syria. It is necessary for the alliance to be based on dialogue with these battalions - with the exception of Jabhat al-Nusra - and to attempt to understand the points and take them into consideration. It was an error for Jabhat al-Nusra to be added to the statement because any project connected with al-Qaeda -which has an un-Syrian agenda - does not unite us in Syria and is an anti-national project. An interim government is an urgent demand to serve the Syrian people in the warring areas and the person who runs it [the interim government] is a warrior from inside [Syria] and conducts consultations with the battalions and the revolutionary forces to choose the members of the government. And the 13 groups of battalions of Islamic revolutionaries in Aleppo were called on Tuesday evening to unification within a clear Islamic framework stemming from the capability of Islam, and these battalions announced that they do not recognize any opposition "formations" from the outside. And these organizations said, and most prominent among them Jabhat al-Nusra and Liwa al-Tawhid and Liwa al-Islam, in the statement spread over the internet that, "All that proceeds in the way of formations from the outside without returning to the inside, does not represent us and is not recognized by us."