05/04/2013

Syria: Verhofstadt wants heavy weapons for Idris

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Free Syrian Army wants guns and heavy weapons

General Selim Idris, Chief of Staff of the Free Syrian Army was in the European Parliament, where he was invited by warmonger Guy Verhofstadt, leader of the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats ‘for Europe’.

Idris said that his army needed the West to supply “weapons and ammunition” so that his forces can “defend themselves.”

He said that, if such support arrived, “The regime will collapse in a month.” He added that Syrians supporting the rebellion didn’t understand why the West had an arms embargo.

“The people say they don’t understand why international community sees the news on TV and just speak, saying ‘Assad has to go’. There is no real action,” he said.

He was supported by ALDE President, Guy Verhofstadt, who said that there was “a growing consensus in Europe that the Syrian conflict cannot go on interminably.” The Liberal leader also said that arms should be supplied “in order that you can defend yourselves.”

According to the liberals, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Catherine Ashton has to make proposals to the 27 EU Member states. In their view, Lady Ashton’s response is currently “mostly passive”.

Both France and Britain have indicated that they are prepared to reconsider the embargo on arming the western backed ‘rebels’…

Photo: Chief of Staff of the ‘Free Syrian Army’ Gen. Salim Idris addresses the media after he discussed the situation in Syria with Guy Verhofstadt, right, at the European Parliament in Brussels, Wednesday March 6, 2013.

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Non-military security

Liberals recognise the contribution to peace made by aid-driven democratisation and development. We believe that we should be more flexible and open minded in our approach to security. The result of this would be to transfer more political commitment and money from military security to non-military security.

Non-military security should include:

arbitration/mediation in areas of potential or actual conflict;
monitoring the implementation of agreements in areas of potential or actual conflict;
reconciliation work in areas of potential or actual conflict;
local community based work to develop and/or maintain democratic structures and human rights in areas of potential conflict or where a fragile peace has been established;
local work to rebuild the economic and social infrastructure of communities damaged by conflict;
research and development into moving economy and industry from reliance on servicing and producing for the military;
study of the causes and resolutions of conflict.

Photo: A news conference at the White House in 2006. Verhofstadt, amused President Bush with a story about mountain biking. 

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