preliminary analysis of the tussle between the Local Co-ordinating Committees (LCCS) and SNC president Burhan Ghalioun from James Miller at EAWorldview:Syria: Some
The LCCS is a networked organisation that operates in every major city and many towns and villages across Syria … The LCCS, while not explicitly political, has a huge degree of influence inside Syria. With its validation of information and attempts to release unified statements from committees around the country, if the LCCS says that the SNC or Burhan Ghalioun do not represent the will of the Syrian people, then this has significant repercussions.
So it would appear that Ghalioun’s resignation is recognition that he has lost the public support of the Syrian opposition.
However, Miller cautions that a close reading of Ghalioun’s “resignation” statement suggests he many not stand down if the adequate “replacement” is not discovered.
Miller also cautions against overstating rifts within the opposition:
"Splintered" suggests that there are major ideological divisions within the opposition. There aren’t. Nationwide, the sentiment in the streets is clear: most people believe in the Free Syrian Army, they believe in foreign intervention, and they renounce sectarian divides …
What’s more, the Syrian opposition seems to be progressing without leadership. The SNC is not organising street protests, nor do they appear to have played a role in the arming of opposition fighters, nor are they coordinating attacks against the Assad military. Yet all of these occur daily.
The Syrian resistance to the Assad government, represented by the peaceful protests and the armed insurgency, are gradually eroding the pillars of the regime.
the video below, said to have been filmed today, they can be seen clinging to a UN car and hoisting the revolution flag.Syria: Students at Aleppo university gave a noisy, almost rapturous welcome to UN monitors. In
Tweets say some of them chanted “freedom” in English and Kurdish.
Syria: Reuters has more from Ghalioun’s resignation statement:
"I declare my resignation as soon as a replacement is found through elections or consensus," Ghalioun told Reuters.
"I have not chosen this post for personal gain, but I have been accepting it to preserve cohesion. I am not ready to be a cause for division. The revolution is above personalities," he added.
The splintered Syrian National Council re-elected the secular liberal Ghalioun as president on Tuesday, but several senior members said his continued re-election would not help the council promote a democratic alternative to President Bashar al-Assad.
Ghalioun has led the opposition in exile since the SNC’s creation in August 2011.
Infighting and a lack of political coherence within the SNC have hindered its effort to win formal international recognition as the sole legitimate representative of the anti-Assad movement.
Meanwhile, Shakeeb al-Jabri tweets:
Ghalioun’s resignation is a step forward for the SNC but that does not solve its problems. Major reform still needed.#Syria
… and Marc Lynch introduces a note of scepticism:
Ghalioun to step down as head of SNC once a replacement can be found; of course if replacement could be found he’d have gone long ago…
Syria: Rafif Jouejati, English-language spokeswoman for the Local Co-ordinating Committees in Syria, criticised the leadership of the opposition Syrian National Council as ineffective, unaccountable, and out of touch with the demands of protesters.
Jouejati said that under the leadership of Burhan Ghalioun the SNC had failed to lobby for international intervention as protesters have demanded.
In an interview with the Guardian she said:
People on the streets have request assistance at multiple levels. First and foremost they have requested humanitarian relief in the form of humanitarian corridors . We believe the SNC has failed at that level. People on the streets have also asked for military intervention, and what we have seen is more political processes, like the Annan plan, which has not resulted in any change for the people on the streets.
Explaining the LCC’s decision to threaten to withdraw from the group, Jouejati said: “The SNC is not operating in the true democratic principles it promised when it was initially formed. Our issue is that major decisions are being taken by a select group of people at the executive levels without regard to the remainder of the SNC.”
She conceded that LCC’s threat of withdrawing from the SNC “may appear to make divisions” in the opposition worse. But she claimed it was a “healthy” development because it showed the opposition was beginning to understand what they wanted. She said:
In the past we have only been able to say what we don’t want. Now we are able to articulate much more clearly what we do want. The differences will be resolved. This statement from the LCC is a wake up call. The SNC is going to need reorganise itself.
Speaking before Burhan Ghalioun announced his resignation, she said: “He was elected by a small number of people within the SNC. I’m not sure his re-election reflects the general desires of the SNC membership. The SNC needs to reassess its priorities and its decision making processes. If they wish to be an inclusive umbrella organisation they will need to reflect their constituency. Right now they are now.”
Ghalioun had failed on the three fronts: internationally, achieving consensus within the council and demonstrating transparency, Jouejati said. “Many of the financial dealings are still a mystery,” she said.
Syria: Burhan Ghalioun, the newly re-elected president of the Syrian National Council, has told Al-Arabiya satellite channel that he will step down as soon as a replacement is found. More details shortly.