Assad regime gains momentum as opposition shows signs of division

Assad regime gains momentum as opposition shows signs of division

Forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, bolstered by their recapture of most of the opposition stronghold Idlib, attacked opposition hotbeds in different parts of Syria on Wednesday as the opposition began to show signs of fracture with the resignations of three prominent members of the Syrian National Council (SNC), Today's Zaman reported.

Syrian forces regained control over most of Idlib on Tuesday, after a three-day operation that came soon after a similar offensive to dislodge the opposition from another key area that it had controlled -- the Baba Amr district in Homs. The two victories already gave Assad's regime momentum as it tries to crush the armed opposition fighters a year after the unrest first started.

Assad is also bolstered by a pledge from ally Russia that it will continue to sell weapons to Syria, increasing prospects that Assad will not bow to the uprising and that Syria may be on the verge of a Balkan-style civil war that could continue for years. The latest signs of fracture on the side of the opposition have further exacerbated concerns over a prolonged civil war in Syria. "I can no longer see myself inside the group because the leadership lacks clarity and does not treat the rest of the council democratically," said Haitham al-Maleh, a prominent rights campaigner who resigned from the SNC's three-person Executive Committee on Tuesday.

Maleh told Today's Zaman that he resigned because council leader Burhan Ghalioun has failed to discuss key decisions with the council and has been slow to extend support to the armed opposition that opposes Damascus on the ground. Maleh's resignation was joined by the departures from the SNC this week of prominent members Kamal al-Labwani, a long-time Damascus opponent and leading figure in the SNC, and Catherine al-Talli, a Washington-based human rights lawyer. A report by Reuters on Monday suggested that more resignations may follow, quoting an anonymous source within the SNC as saying that as many as 60 of the 270 member group may soon resign. "The leadership does not want to play as a group," said Maleh. "Ghalioun did not consult other members of the group when he wrote his speech for the meeting of the 'Friends of the Syrian People' meeting in Tunisia, and he did not even tell other members of the council that he was going to meet with Kofi Annan in Ankara this week. ... The group is not a council, it is run like the Baath party."

The SNC has aspired since its formation in September of last year to be seen as the legitimate voice of Syria's opposition movement, but the effort has been limited by infighting between the group's wide range of ethnic and political factions. Activists in Syria have claimed that the group's leadership, dominated by exiled dissidents, is not in tune with the anti-regime movement inside Syria. The SNC has found itself hard-pressed to woo Syria's diverse range of ethnic minorities, who have been favored for 42 years by the Assad family's Alawite-minority regime.

Maleh on Wednesday dismissed the possibility that the SNC could become an effective platform for opposing the regime, and announced his plans to create a parallel group that would focus on delivering arms and money to the coalition of anti-Assad militias collectively known as the Free Syrian Army (FSA). The SNC's own decision to assist the armed opposition has been harshly criticized by the FSA itself, who declared that the FSA wanted "actions and not just talk."

Meanwhile, UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan received Syrian response to a group of proposals Annan tabled and is due to brief the UN Security Council on Friday about his peace mission to Syria on Saturday. Council diplomats say that Annan's assessment of the crisis will be crucial to a bid by the United States and its European allies to pass a resolution on Syria. Russia and China have already twice vetoed draft resolutions condemning Syria. Negotiations on a resolution are expected to accelerate after Annan's briefing, diplomats said.

4 terrorists killed in clash with police in SW Pakistan
4 terrorists killed in clash with police in SW Pakistan
Japan plans to recruit astronauts in 2021, first time in 13 yrs
Japan plans to recruit astronauts in 2021, first time in 13 yrs
Export of cars from Turkey to Ukraine up – Trade ministry
Export of cars from Turkey to Ukraine up – Trade ministry
Loading Bars
Latest
Iran, Austria discuss joint coop. on containment of COVID-19
4 terrorists killed in clash with police in SW Pakistan
U.S. may file antitrust charges against Facebook as soon as November: newspaper
France becomes 2nd EU country with over 1 mln COVID-19 cases, record daily caseloads haunting Europe
Palestinians condemn normalization agreement between Sudan, Israel
New York early voting starts on Saturday, 1st time in its history
McDonald's urges dismissal of Black former franchisees' discrimination lawsuit
Sudan becomes third Arab state to set aside hostilities with Israel this year
Artillery units, command post of Armenian armed forces destroyed as result of airstrikes (VIDEO)
Jeyhun Bayramov met with assistant to President for US National Security Affairs
Military volunteers, equipment of Armenian Armed Forces destroyed in directions of Khojavend, Fuzuli (VİDEO)
UAVs of Azerbaijan do not conduct flight over territory of Armenia - MoD
Azerbaijan has enough armored vehicles in its arsenal, uses them in operational situations - MoD
Information on alleged artillery shelling of Khankendi and Khojavend districts by Azerbaijan - not true
Chairperson, deputy chairperson of US - Educated Azerbaijani Alumni Association appeal to US Secretary of State
Yerevan not interested in peace, wants to escalate conflict, make it a regional one, says Azerbaijani's First VP
Information spread by Armenian side on Iran's artillery shelling Azerbaijan’s positions - false
Turkey reduces volume of exports of mining industry
Iran discloses value of exports from Tehran Province
Georgia increases import of ground and instant coffee
Japan plans to recruit astronauts in 2021, first time in 13 yrs
Kazakhstan increases exports to Denmark despite COVID-19
Azerbaijani FM talks Karabakh conflict with US Secretary of State
Azerbaijani Bank of Baku's net profit declines multifold
Member of UK’s House of Lords condemns Armenia’s missile attacks on Azerbaijan’s Ganja
Rejection of UN’s unfair statement – another diplomatic victory for Azerbaijani president
Azerbaijani Xalq Bank's income for 9M2020 published
Data on cargo handling from US via Turkish ports for 9M2020 revealed
Azerbaijani soldiers liberate cities, settlements from occupation one after another - First VP
Export of cars from Turkey to Russia down – Trade ministry
Export of cars from Turkey to Turkmenistan drops
Export of cars from Turkey to Tajikistan down
Export of cars from Turkey to Ukraine up – Trade ministry
Armenia attracting mercenaries to occupied territories of Azerbaijan
Targeting Azerbaijani civilians by Armenia - crime, says Uzbek ambassador
Azerbaijani MoD shows footage of liberated Minbashyly village in Jabrayil district (VIDEO)
Cabinet of Ministers bans entry/exit to several Azerbaijani cities and districts
Armenia poses threat to Trans-Caspian International Transport Route
Azerbaijan's Xalq Bank discloses its assets for 9M2020
Payments with foreign cards down in Georgia
Export operations between Azerbaijan and Croatia double
New terminal to be built in Georgia's Poti port
Azerbaijani Prosecutor General's Office gives updates on damages, following Armenia's attacks
Meeting between Azerbaijani FM and US secretary of state held
Kazakhstan's import from Poland down amid COVID-19
ADB supports Georgia in its COVID-19 fight
Azerbaijan, Latvia keen to increase mutual investments (PHOTO)
Russian president's statement on Karabakh generally suits Azerbaijan - deputy parliament speaker
Armenians threatening to kill French TV channel's journalist (PHOTOS)
ISET-PI thnk-tank updates its real GDP growth forecast for Georgia
Azerbaijan's troops liberate villages in Khojavend, Jabrayil, Zangilan districts
Azerbaijan liberates 4 Gubadli district villages from Armenia's occupation
Georgia to allocate funds for marketing of its wine
EAEU reveals volume of food oil exports to Turkmenistan
Secretary General of Organization of Islamic Countries supports Azerbaijan
Georgia to issue agricultural loans to promote primary production of annual crops
Turkmenistan's Turkmennebit opens tender for purchase of pipes
Uzbekistan to maintain positive GDP growth despite difficult economic conditions
Uzbekistan’s National Bank likely to be backed by gov't, Fitch Ratings says
Azerbaijani people trust their president - First VP Mehriban Aliyeva
Percentage share of Austria in Azerbaijan's total import slightly grows
Kazakhstan’s KazMunayGas receives ESG rating in sustainable development
Chairman of US Educated Azerbaijani Alumni Association appeals to US Ambassador in Azerbaijan
Surrendered Armenian officer says Karabakh isn't Armenian land
Armenian armed forces' manpower, armored vehicles destroyed, says Azerbaijani MoD (VIDEO)
Azerbaijan itself doing what Minsk Group didn’t - MP
Inflow of funds to Georgia up
Kazakhstan must invest in agriculture technologies oriented towards Kazakh reality
Israel sends humanitarian aid to Azerbaijan (PHOTO)
Uzbek import of cars from Turkey shrinks
Ballistic missile attacks on Gabala and other Azerbaijani cities - vandalism and fascism of Armenian leadership - People's Artist
Volume of nine-month cargo shipment from Germany via Turkish ports revealed
Iran to implement second phase of ring road around Hormoz Island
Turkmengas to buy geophysical equipment via tender
New buses to start serving passengers in Georgian Tbilisi
Deutsche Bank: Brexit trade costs will be 'material' deal or no deal
Metallurgical products import to Uzbekistan to be reduced via metallurgical plant in Tashkent
Stable basic export rate could help boost Iran's exports
Iran to settle all wheat farmers' claims
WB implements new project in Georgia
President Aliyev holds phone conversation with father of National Hero of Azerbaijan Shukur Hamidov
Iran plans to establish trade centers
New company admitted to Baku Stock Exchange
Shukur Hamidov's name will be immortalized in Gubadli district
Iran reveals its COVID-19 data for October 23
Iran increases number of emergency beds in hospitals
Ambassador welcomes liberation of Azerbaijan's Agbend settlement on border with Iran
Turkey hopes for achieving success in Karabakh conflict settlement together with Russia - Erdogan
Putin's comments were response to those taking anti-Azerbaijani position, analyst says
Kazakhstan's postal service operator to buy petrol via tender
Discussions on Karabakh conflict held at UN Security Council 25 years later - Assistant to Azerbaijani president
Export of cars to Kyrgyzstan spiked - Turkish Ministry of Trade
Turkmenistan increases fruit imports from EAEU countries
It's incorrect to talk about CSTO's help, while conflict taking place in Karabakh - Russian MFA
Azerbaijan confirms 212 more COVID-19 recoveries
No objective benefit for NATO's open support to any party of Karabakh conflict - Russian expert
Georgia reveals total projected harvest of grapes in 2020
Gold, silver prices in Azerbaijan down
Armenia carries out eco-terrorism against Azerbaijan
Georgia names number of beneficiaries received discount cards under agro-diesel promotion program
All news