Rosenthal meets members of Syria Committee
On Wednesday, foreign minister Uri Rosenthal held talks with members of the Syria Committee. Last year several of its members organised ‘Jasmine Square’, a meeting place for the Syrian community. In addition to demonstrations, it hosts political debates on Syria, e.g. with members of parliament, and takes part in international consultations with members of the Syrian opposition.
Mr Rosenthal discussed with the Committee how the Netherlands can support people demonstrating against the repressive Assad regime. He stressed the need for unity among Syrians to ensure that demonstrations are a success. He repeated the pledge of support to Syrian opposition groups that the Netherlands had given in Istanbul. He also urged the opposition to increase its strength by seeking greater unity.
Mr Rosenthal remains concerned about developments in Syria. ‘I regard the Syrian regime as responsible for the violence,’ he said. ‘The violence must stop and Assad must leave.’ Within the EU, the Netherlands will continue to press for stricter sanctions.
Mr Rosenthal is very disturbed by the mounting violence in Syria. ‘What’s happening there is appalling,’ he said. He reiterated the Dutch position that pressure on the regime should be stepped up, and stressed once again the importance of the opposition forming a united front.