François Hollande to back a Syrian opposition government
Tuesday 28 August 2012
The French President François Hollande yesterday called on Syria's opposition to form a provisional government, saying France would recognise it once such a government is formed.
The announcement from Hollande, in a speech to France's ambassadors, amounts to an attempt to ratchet up diplomatic pressure on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime amid escalating bloodshed in Syria.
Syria's opposition remains badly fragmented, and it is far from clear whether such a provisional government could be formed anytime soon. But Hollande's statement, believed to be the first of its kind, appeared aimed to give an impetus to the creation of such a government.
"France asks the Syrian opposition to form a provisional government – inclusive and representative – that can become the legitimate representative of the new Syria," the French leader said.
"We are including our Arab partners to accelerate this step," he told hundreds of diplomats and dignitaries at the presidential palace. "France will recognise the provisional government of Syria once it is formed."
Hollande also took issue with Russian and Chinese reticence about reaching tougher language against Assad's regime, saying "their attitude weakens our ability to carry out the mandate conferred on us by the UN charter".
Syria's opposition has been plagued by divisions and infighting since the start of the uprising last year, and a formation of a transitional government is fraught with difficulties.
Abdelbaset Sieda, the leader of the main umbrella opposition group, the Syrian National Council, said recently that the group was making plans and consultations for a transitional government. However, several other opposition groups are known to be making similar plans, including a new opposition alliance headed by veteran opposition figure Haitham Maleh.
The call came amid continued fighting in the country. In Damascus, a Syrian military helicopter caught fire and crashed after it was apparently hit during fighting between government forces and rebels, an activist group said. State media confirmed the crash.
Exclusive: World’s most pristine waters are polluted by US Navy human waste
Saint Patrick's Day: Google Doodle marks patron saint of Ireland - here are 10 things you didn't know about the man
Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Did jetliner fly into area controlled by Taliban? Net widens after claims final satellite signal could have been sent from the ground
Britain’s five richest families worth as much as poorest 20 per cent, says Oxfam
Nasa-funded study warns of ‘collapse of civilisation’ in coming decades
Ukip and Nigel Farage on course for remarkable victory in European elections
Katie Hopkins continues campaign to become Britain's most hated talking head with poorly timed Bob Crow tweet
Tony Benn was entirely ineffectual - and usually wrong
No EU referendum under Labour: Ed Miliband to reveal that vote on membership is ‘unlikely’ in next Parliament if party wins power
The rise of Ukip: Study warns Labour that Eurosceptic party's electoral base now 'more working class than any of the main parties'
Europeans have ‘got whiter’ due to natural selection in past 5,000 years, scientists say
- 1 Is your name now 'banned' in Saudi Arabia?
- 2 Gender-specific books demean all our children. So the Independent on Sunday will no longer review anything marketed to exclude either sex
- 3 Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Did jetliner fly into area controlled by Taliban? Net widens after claims final satellite signal could have been sent from the ground
- 4 Nasa-funded study warns of ‘collapse of civilisation’ in coming decades
- 5 'Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 plane found in Bermuda Triangle!' Viral Facebook links are profiting hackers
£50000 - £60000 per annum: Pro-Recruitment Group: This leading Big 4 practice ...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Group: The school, the child…We are proud to su...
£1000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: A full service agency, focused around plan...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: Nursery nurse jobs in ManchesterWe ...