from Doha talks
WASHINGTON, Nov 8 (KUNA) -- US officials would like to see emerging from
the Doha conference on Syria the emergence of a political structure that is
"broadly representative" of all of the groups and regions of Syria, U.S. State
Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said on Thursday.
Such a structure should be "better connected to the situation on the
ground, to the folks who are working on the future political structure and the
current political structure within the opposition inside Syria," she said
during a department briefing.
"We want to see all of the geographic aspects of Syria represented so that
people inside Syria will feel comfortable with this group, that their own
views will be represented, that they will be protected in a future Syria that
this group would be working on and so that those doubters in the international
community or who are still clinging to (Syrian President Bashar) Assad will
see that there is a better future in this group," Nuland said.
Asked if the United States will be willing to recognize those gathered at
Doha as the legitimate voice of Syrians, Nuland, said, "We want to see
something strong and diverse and unifying come out of this, and then we will
go from there".
One of the issues U.S. officials want to come out of Doha is a group that
can better help the international community direct the assistance going into
Syria, whether humanitarian or non-lethal assistance, she said.
"In terms of other forms of political, economic support, let us see how the
group looks, and we will go from there," she added.
Asked about perceptions that the Doha group that emerges might be perceived
as a U.S.-solicited or U.S.-planned group, Nuland said, "We are not concerned
about that. We are not inside the room where the Syrians are making these
decisions. These decisions will be made by Syrians. What we are doing, as are
some 20 other countries who have representatives out in Doha: observing".
The question of accountability for Assad is something the Syrian people
will have to be in the lead on, she said, adding, "Those who committed abuses
need to be held to account. How and in what form that comes forward is
something for the Syrian people to decide".
A number of countries have made clear to Assad that they would be willing
to host him, but "he has chosen not to avail himself of those opportunities,"
The question in Doha "is whether there is going to be a political
leadership structure that emerges that can be more effective," she said. (end)
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