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Middle East

Syrian opposition PM Ghassan Hitto resigns

© AFP

Video by Adam PLETTS

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2013-07-09

Ghassan Hitto, prime minister of the Syrian National Coalition (SNC), the country’s main opposition group, announced his resignation on Monday, citing his inability to form an interim government.

Syria's rebel prime minister Ghassan Hitto announced his resignation on Monday, nearly four months after his appointment and having failed to form a government.

"I announce I will not continue in my capacity as prime minister tasked with leading the interim government, though I emphasise I will continue working for the interests of the revolution and towards achieving its objectives," Hitto said in an online statement.

His resignation comes two days after secular dissident Ahmad Assi Jarba was chosen to lead the main opposition National Coalition.

Jarba is seen as close to Saudi Arabia, which opposed the selection of Hitto to head the interim government in March.

Dissidents say Hitto, who is close to the opposition's Islamist ranks and whose candidacy was backed by Qatar, was unable to work because of divisions within the Coalition.

FRANCE 24’s Adam Pletts confirmed that Hitto’s struggled with dissenting views and agendas within the group.

“There is a great number of groups within the organisation, some representing ethnic groups such as the Kurds, others religious such as the Brotherhood, others secular, all with various backings, from Qatar, Saudi Arabia or Westerners, all of whom have a different vision of how the Coalition should work”, Pletts noted.

Hitto said he decided to resign in order "to help... the Coalition's new leadership to act according to its political vision, especially with regards to the interim government and its executive functions."

(FRANCE 24 with wires)

Date created : 2013-07-08

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