Leaders Discuss Importance of Supporting Moderate Opposition
Senator John McCain with Chief of Staff of the Supreme Military Council General Bashir, Vice Chief of Staff of the Supreme Military Council Colonel Haytham Afisi and Secretary of the Syrian Opposition Coalition Political Committee Hadi al-Bahra.
In a meeting with Senator John McCain Tuesday in southern Turkey, leaders of the Syrian Opposition Coalition and Supreme Military Council emphasized that increased U.S. support for the moderate opposition will benefit both the Syrian people and the United States in the international fight against terrorism. Leaders briefed Senator McCain on ongoing efforts to fight ISIS extremists, and stressed the importance of international support to the moderate opposition at this critical time.
The $500 million program to train and equip vetted moderate opposition fighters requested by President Obama is urgently needed to hold the line against the advances of the Islamic extremist army of ISIS. The Free Syrian Army has been battling ISIS in the northern and eastern regions of Syria, where the Jihadist group has occupied territory and tortured and killed innocent civilians.
General Abdul-Ilah al-Bashir, Commander of the Supreme Military Council, said the moderate opposition was now fighting the war on two fronts -- against the Islamic fundamentalist army of ISIS, and the Assad regime, which has killed hundreds of thousands of Syrians, and at the same time enabled and facilitated the extremists to thrive and grow. ISIS has brought in heavy weapons and equipment captured from the Iraqi Army back across the border into Syria to boost their firepower. In the fight against ISIS, 800 moderate opposition forces have been killed by ISIS extremists and thousands more injured over approximately the last six months.
Present at the meeting with Senator McCain were Chief of Staff of the Supreme Military Council General Abdul-Ilah al-Bashir, Vice Chief of Staff of the Supreme Military Council Colonel Haytham Afisi, Secretary of the Political Committee of the Syrian Opposition Coalition Hadi al-Bahra, and Vice President of the Coalition Muhammad Tayfor.
On behalf of the Syrian people, the leaders thanked Senator McCain for his steadfast support to the Syrian people's struggle for freedom.
Contact: Oubai Shahbandar