New proposal to solve Syrian crisis
Turki Al-Faisal, Amr Moussa, Alkhatib and Mohammad Al-Sabah propose convening of 2nd Syrian National Congress
RIYADH: Four leading lights of the Arab world have called for the convening of the Second Syrian National Congress to save Syria. “This is the only way (out),” said Prince Turki Al-Faisal, former general intelligence director of Saudi Arabia; Abdelelah Alkhatib, former foreign minister of Jordan; Amr Musa, former secretary-general of the Arab League; and Mohammad Al-Sabah, former deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs of Kuwait.
They explained their proposal in details an exclusive article published in Arab News on Monday.
“This tragic situation would not have happened had the Syrian regime acted wisely, responsibly, and realistically. It did not,” they said.
“The misery and decimation could also have been avoided had the international community fulfilled its duty and obligations to safeguard international peace and security. It did not. The Arab League, the international powers, the Syrian government — all have failed in their efforts to salvage the national unity of Syria by replacing the bloodshed and devastation with peace and security.”
They said unless the world deals courageously with Syria, the atrocity within its borders will continue.
“We will never defeat Daesh, the Nusra Front and their likes as long as there is fertile soil from which they can resurrect and mutate into far more lethal breeds. Solving Syria is not only a humanitarian issue; it is directly related to a victory over terror,” they said.
The only way to solve Syria, according to them, is to allow the Syrian people to decide their future.
“They must be given a voice and a venue away from the regime that has ravaged them. They must be offered deliberative immunity from the terror groups that have hijacked their aspirations. They must also be allowed to chart their future free from regional and international interference,” they said.
They proposed the convening of a second Syrian National Congress.
“It will be open to representatives of all Syrian political and social forces. If we can bring civil society organizations together with representatives of cities, towns, villages and tribes — both those who fight for and against the regime — we will create a formidable vehicle for weaving a harmonious and solid accord on a political system and constitution that can help the Syrian people save their society and realize their quest,” they said.
The ideas put forward by the four leaders met with a favorable response from a cross-section of Saudi and Syrian professionals, including human rights activists.
“The proposal sounds realistic,” said Mamoun Abo Baker, a Syrian national based in Riyadh.
The idea to discuss the future of Syria by Syrian people was also backed by Dr. Ibrahim Al-Qayid, a member of the National Society for Human Rights (NSHR).
“The details (of holding the Syrian National Congress) can be worked out as per the suggestions given by the authors in the article,” said Al-Qayid.
He, however, recalled the recent statements of Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir who said that “the majority of the Syrian people are in favor and seeking Bashar Assad’s removal after he lost his legitimacy long back.”
Issam Tarakji, a public relations executive, said: “The Syrian president must not be part of any deal in any future government.”
Tarakji said: “Assad is waging a war against his own people.
“Syrian people should be allowed to choose their future leaders.”