Syrian opposition coalition pronounced dead by former leader
Syrian opposition leader cites increasing authoritarianism and rampant Turkish influence as the cause of the disintegration of the coalition.
Former President of the National Coalition of Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces, Ahmed Muaz al-Khatib, declared the "death of the opposition coalition" in a post on X last night.
"Let Syrians take note that on Sunday, September 10, 2023, what was known as the Syrian Opposition Coalition, once a voice of opposition, died a popular and national death. Curse its political cowardice and opportunism," al-Khatib said in a post on X.
Al-Khatib's post was accompanied by a joint declaration with Nasr al-Hariri, former head of the Syrian Negotiation Commission, reflecting deep-seated divisions within the ranks of the Syrian opposition and the coalition.
أنعي إلى جميع السوريين: وفاة الائتلاف الذي كان معارضاً.— أحمد معاذ الخطيب (@Mouaz_AlKhatib) September 10, 2023
هناك تهديد مُشين لإجبار أعضائه على التصويت لقيادة مفروضة عليه.
حزب البعث الستاليني لم يستطع إركاع السوريين ولن تستطيع عقلية فتافيته الوصاية عليه بالإجبار اليوم.
لاجنازة للمتوفى فالمرتد عن وطنه تحرم الصلاة عليه. شارك وانشر pic.twitter.com/AKThlSC0ql
In the statement, they criticized the coalition's elections and the authoritarian language of the "interim prime minister" regarding the election of Hadi al-Bahra as the coalition's president.
While noting their respect and gratitude for Turkey and the Turkish President, the statement also criticized Turkey's unchecked influence over the coalition, casting blame primarily on the opposition's institutions.
He added that the approach of allies toward Syrian opposition institutions was "unbecoming", noting that a dominant group within the coalition "monopolizes communication channels with the outside world" and has engaged in "score-settling battles and power consolidation within the coalition".
Al-Khatib said the actions of some groups in the group did not differ from the "Stalinist" Baath party. Poetically, he pronounced the coalition dead but announced that there would be no funeral processions such that it is religiously inauspicious to pray on the soul of a traitor.
This development comes amid increasing fragmentation within the Syrian foreign-backed opposition. Earlier, Fadi Jamous an opposition activist and the founder of the "Path for Peaceful Change" movement, spoke to Al Mayadeen about the Syrian opposition's disintegration, especially among civil society groups abiding by international laws: emphasizing the necessity for dialogue with President Bashar al-Assad to find a way forward, in light of the diminishing momentum of the Syrian opposition.