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National Coalition President: Riyadh Plans to Host Extended Meeting for Syrian Opposition | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Riad Seif, Head of the Syrian National Coalition for Opposition and Revolutionary Force (AFP Photo/TIM BRAKEMEIER)

Riyadh, Jeddah – The head of the Syrian National Coalition opposition group, Riad Seif, said that Saudi Arabia was planning to host an extended meeting for the different factions of the High Negotiations Committee (HNC), to discuss upcoming challenges and the outcome of communication between opposition groups, in particular the Cairo and Moscow platforms.

Seif met on Wednesday with the undersecretary of the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Political and Economic Affairs Ambassador, Dr. Adel bin Siraj Mirdad in Riyadh.

In remarks to Asharq Al-Awsat, the Syrian opposition figure noted that his meeting with Mirdad, who was representing Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir, lasted four hours, during which the officials issued related to the Syrian file.

“We have provided a general view of the institutions of the coalition, especially the interim government and the role that can be assigned to it, especially after the completion of the entry of factions of the Free Army and representatives of elected local councils,” he stated.

Seif said that the delegation has received Saudi pledges to support the coalition and the interim government in assuming their effective role of managing the de-escalation zones, which fall under the authority of the interim government, and supervising over state properties and institutions to avoid power vacuum.

The head of the National Coalition for Opposition and Revolutionary Forces revealed efforts to improve the HNC representation “to enable it to play a strong and effective role, taking into account the changes that took place since its establishment a year and a half ago.”

Seif pointed out, on the other hand, that Mirdad has stressed Saudi Arabia’s adherence to Syria’s autonomous decision and respect to the choices made by the Syrian people.

In a statement to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) published following the meeting, Mirdad said: “It is on the basis of the keenness of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and his Deputy … on the future of Syria and the security and safety of its brotherly people, that this meeting was held to confirm the Kingdom’s steadfast stance on the Syrian crisis and to discuss developments and coordinate visions and positions.”

“We are keen to unite efforts to guarantee a solution to the Syrian crisis and to support the brotherly Syrian people in determining their fate,” he added.