Syria Reacts To GCC Criticism


DAMASCUS, Syria, Aug. 8 (UPI) — The Gulf Cooperation Council is ignoring facts on the ground by criticizing Syria’s response to a violent uprising, a government source said.

The U.N. Security Council stopped short of issuing a formal resolution condemning Syria for its crackdown on anti-government demonstrators. It did, however, issue a strong statement criticizing the bloodshed.

GCC members last weekend called on Syria to end the violence. GCC members include the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Saudi King Abdallah, in a separate statement, pressed Damascus to enact serious and concrete reforms in the country.

“What is happening in Syria is unacceptable to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” the statement added. “The events are greater than can be justified by reasons.”

Syria has announced a series of political reforms it says allays protesters’ concerns.

An unidentified source was quoted by the official Syrian Arab News Agency as saying the GCC condemnation missed the point.

“Overcoming the current situation of violence and the real desire to serve Syria’s interest requires that the Arabs in the GCC call for stopping acts of sabotage and condemning armed violence by groups that don’t have good intentions for Syria, in addition to giving the space and time needed to translate reforms into reality,” the source said.

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