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Regime and Opposition Meet in Geneva

Bouthaina Shaaban: "My position in the government does not mean that I cannot be considered an opposition supporter"
Regime and Opposition Meet in Geneva

Syrian opposition and representatives of the regime met in Geneva for talks this week.


The conference was attended by the UN Special Envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura, together with representatives of the foreign ministries of Switzerland, Norway, Denmark, Egypt, Russia.


Opposition parties and figures attending the meeting were: Saleh Muslim of the Democratic Union Party, representatives of a number of Kurdish parties, Hassan Abdul Azim of the Coordination Commission, Mona Ghanem of the State-building Movement, Randa Kassis, Walid al-Bunni of the Democrats Mass, in addition to businessmen Dr. Ayman al-Asfari and Dr. Khaled Mahameed.


The Coalition's noticeable absence was justified by the presence of Egypt and Saudi Arabia, who accuse the Coalition of close ties to Muslim Brotherhood following recent elections.


Bouthaina Shaaban, who was also present, held a private meeting with Mrs. Randa Kassis, where Shaaban was quoted as saying, "I can be considered an opposition supporter and regime supporter, if we take into consideration that the criticism practiced by some opposition invitees like Randa Kassis – about corruption, mismanagement, women's rights and lack of democracy and transparency – are the same issues I have criticized publicly in the conferences of the Baath Party. My position in the government does not mean that I cannot be considered an opposition supporter. This is the same case of D. Qadri Jamil, who was the Deputy Prime Minister and is considered an opposition supporter.

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