Western role in Syria will prove costly: Assad

February 7th, 2012 - 6:11 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Feb 7 (IANS) An international campaigner for democracy in Syria Tuesday accused the West of working overtime for regime change in his country.

Ribal Al-Assad, an exiled cousin of President Bashar Assad, said the West, after hijacking the democracy movement in Syria, could end up with a far worse solution “than the present brutal regime”.

The founder and director of the Organisation for Democracy and Freedom in Syria was speaking at the Observer Research Foundation here.

Assad accused the West of delegating the move for regime change in Syria to countries like Turkey which support fundamentalist forces.

“The so-called solution of the West could turn out to be worse than the disease. If the power goes to fundamentalists, that would be worse. A majority of the people do not want this,” Assad, who is also chairman of the Iman Foundation, said.

Saying he was against a military solution mooted by the West and Arab League, Assad said the best answer to Syrian crisis would be building up a people’s movement and unifying the opposition parties.

“We have been fighting for democracy for many years. Our movement began much before the Arab spring,” Assad said.

“But now, with the support of countries like Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, the West is helping fundamentalist forces.

“This is very bad for democracy. Those who fight for democracy in Syria have been completely ignored,” Assad said.

Assad urged India, which he said has a reputation of being independent outside so-called power blocs, to put pressure on Turkey and others in the region to avoid giving into “dangerous fundamentalists”.

He expressed happiness over India’s vote in the UN for an Arab League sponsored resolution that condemned the continuing crackdown in Syria that has left thousands dead in the past year.

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