Syrian opposition

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The Syrian opposition (Arabic: المعارضة السوريةAl-Mu'aradah Al-Suriyah) is an umbrella term for groups and individuals calling for regime change in Syria and who oppose its Ba'athist government. Opposition groups in Syria took a new turn in 2011 after the Syrian civil war as they united to form the Syrian National Council that has managed to get international support and recognized as partner for dialogue. The SNC is recognized by at least one country, Libya.

Syria was under Emergency Law since 1963 when the Ba'ath Party took power in a coup. The head of state since 1971 has been a member of the Assad family. Under Hafez's time as a president of Syria, from 1980 onward opposition to the Ba'athist regime had been prohibited. Five principal security agencies served primarily to monitor political dissent. The state of emergency meant military courts apply martial law and special courts try political cases with no regard for human rights or due process. Prisoners were routinely tortured and held in appalling conditions. Following the death of Hafez al-Assad in June 2000 his son, Bashar, took over as new president of Syria. When the Arab Spring broke out, Syrian protesters began consolidating opposition councils.

Contents

Syrian National Council

The "independence flag" of Syria, used before the Ba'athist coup in 1963, has been widely used by protestors as an opposition flag and has been adopted officially by the Syrian National Council and the Free Syrian Army.[1][2][3][4]

SNC is a coalition of Syrian opposition groups based in Istanbul, Turkey that was formed in 2011 during the Syrian civil war.[5][6] Key people are current chairman Abdulbaset Sieda as well as ex chairman Burhan Ghalioun.

Other opposition groups

The NCC is isolated within the Syrian opposition, and is not recognized by the Syrian Revolution General Commission, the Local Coordination Committees of Syria or the Supreme Council of the Syrian Revolution[41] The NCC has failed to come to any agreement with the Syrian National Council. Despite recognizing the Free Syrian Army on 23 September 2012, the FSA has rebuffed any association with the NCC.[42] The NCC differs from the SNC on two main points of strategy:
1) The NCC refuses to accept foreign military intervention, although it does accept various forms of support for the opposition and supports Arab League involvement in the conflict.
2) It tries to maintain a pacifist stance in relationship to the Syrian regime, despite recently endorsing the Free Syrian Army.

Kurdish Supreme Committee

The Kurdish flag flies over cities in the Kurdish statelet that has emerged in north-eastern Syria.[44][45]

The Kurdish Supreme Committee is a governing body of Kurdish-held regions in Syria founded by the Kurdish Democratic Union Party and Kurdish National Council following cooperation agreement between the two sides, signed on 12 July, in Erbil under auspice of the Iraqi Kurdistan president Massoud Barzani.[46] Its member board consist of equal number of PYD and KNC members.[47]

Parliamentary opposition

Syria

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The regime itself is divided, with several factions calling for either a change of direction under Assad, or for the replacement of Assad and the continuation of the Ba'athist regime.

List of opposition figures

See also

References

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