Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns of further sanctions against Russia

    Read more

  • Experimental Ebola drug ‘ZMapp’ heals all monkeys in study

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch NATO membership bid

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • Chelsea’s Torres set for AC Milan switch

    Read more

  • France shines in IMF list of world’s promising economists

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

  • First case of Ebola confirmed in Senegal

    Read more

  • Obama has 'no strategy yet' on potential Syria strikes

    Read more

  • Netflix to woo French with ‘House of Cards’ set in Marseille

    Read more

  • French businesses ‘hoping for a new Thatcher’

    Read more

  • Syrian refugees surpass 3 million, UN says

    Read more

  • West backs Ukrainian claims of Russian incursion

    Read more

  • Libyan PM resigns as Islamists set up rival administration

    Read more

  • UN says 43 peacekeepers captured in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • The deleted tweets of Manuel Valls

    Read more

  • Peru seizes record 6.5 tonnes of Europe-bound cocaine

    Read more

  • Pakistan army to mediate between PM, protesters

    Read more

  • In pictures: Billions of locusts invade Madagascan capital

    Read more

France

France recognises new Syrian opposition coalition

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-11-14

French President François Hollande recognised Syria's newly formed opposition coalition as the country's sole legitimate representative during a press conference on Tuesday, making France the first European country to do so.

France broke ranks with its European allies on Tuesday by officially recognising Syria’s new opposition coalition and said it would consider arming the rebels once they created a government in waiting.

Syrian opposition groups struck a deal in Doha on Sunday to form a broad coalition to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad after 20 months of an uprising against his rule.

Arab and EU foreign ministers welcomed the formation of the coalition at a meeting in Cairo on Tuesday as an important step forward, but stopped short of recognising it.

Hollande backs new Syrian opposition coalition

“I announce today that France recognises the Syrian National Council as the sole legitimate representative of the Syrian people and as the future government of a democratic Syria making it possible to bring an end to Bashar al-Assad’s regime,” Hollande told a news conference in Paris.

Paris, one of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s harshest critics, has previously ruled out arming rebel forces, concerned that weapons could get into the hands of radical Islamists.

Hollande suggested this stance may now change.

“On the question of weapons deliveries, France did not support it as long as it wasn’t clear where these weapons went,” Hollande said.

“With the coalition, as soon as it is a legitimate government of Syria, this question will be looked at by France, but also by all countries that recognise this government.”

France was the first country to formally recognise the Libya’s transitional government as an alternative to former leader Muammar Gaddafi and at the time also broke ranks from its European partners.

The Gulf Cooperation Council recognised the new coalition on Monday.

 

(REUTERS)

Date created : 2012-11-13

  • SAUDI ARABIA - FRANCE

    Hollande holds talks in Saudi Arabia on Iran and Syria

    Read more

  • LEBANON

    France's Hollande in Beirut for talks on Syria crisis

    Read more

COMMENT(S)