NPR : News

Filed Under:

Syrian Opposition Group Boycotts International Meetings

Syria's main opposition group is declining invitations to international meetings to protest what it calls the "shameful" failure by world leaders to end violence there.

"The international silence on the crimes committed every day against our people amounts to participating in two years of killings," the Syrian National Coalition said in a statement released Friday and reported on by Agence France-Presse and other news organizations.

"We hold the Russian leaders in particular ethically and politically responsible because they continue to support the [Damascus] regime with weapons," the statement said.

The group's leaders had received invitations to attend meetings in Moscow and Washington, D.C. Now, those meetings won't happen.

The coalition is also pulling out of a conference in Rome next month with the international coalition, Friends of Syria, which supports the opposition.

"The main significance of this decision to boycott international diplomatic meetings on Syria is that it effectively torpedoes the initiative launched by the coalition's own leader Moaz al-Khatib," the BBC's Jim Muir reported Saturday.

On Friday, three missile strikes fired by Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces killed more than 29 people in a rebel-held area of eastern Aleppo, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The Associated Press reports that fighting between rebels and regime troops intensified in Aleppo on Saturday as they struggle for control over the nation's second-largest airport.

Rebel forces control land outside of Aleppo and have been trying to take control of the city's airport for months.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit


Not My Job: Comedian Carol Burnett Gets Quizzed On Cougars (The Cats, Of Course)

In the 1970s, families would sit down together every Saturday to watch The Carol Burnett Show. The first five seasons of the legendary variety show are now out on DVD.

Time To Pursue The Pawpaw, America's Fleeting Fall Fruit

Ever seen a pawpaw in the supermarket? Didn't think so. Ohioan Chris Chmiel wants to change that by growing and promoting this seasonal, mango-like fruit that's native to the U.S.

An Evangelical Leader's Changing Views On Gun Ownership

As legislators fail to find solutions to mass shootings, Evangelical Minister Rob Schenck thinks religious groups have a part to play in educating people about guns and their relationships with them.

This Week In Data Collection News, And The Privacy Paradox

As California tightened its digital privacy protections, news involving Google, Pandora and other firms highlighted the way companies increasingly rely on data about their users. How much do we care?

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.