It's not a Purim prank: A Syrian opposition figure has turned to the Israeli public in Hebrew, through The Jerusalem Post
's sister publication Ma'ariv Hashavua
, in order to deliver a message.
"We call on all of the national forces to oust the tyranny, and only afterward, we will choose the form and character of the state," reads a message to the Israeli public, delivered by a third party to Ma'ariv Hashavua.
The Ghad al-Suri movement (Syria's Tomorrow), led by Ahmad Jarba, was officially established in Cairo last week. The movement expressed great interest in sending a message to the Israeli public upon its establishment.
Ma'ariv Hashavua has learned that the movement's diplomatic bureau was helped in translating their message by an Arab Israeli woman who lives in London.
In addition, the movement told an Arab Israeli source that it was interested in holding either covert or public discussions with the Israeli government. The source recommended that they "send their messages discreetly in order to avoid losing credibility among the Syrian public and among their potential supporters in the Arab world."
Ma'ariv Hashavua further learned that the movement sent a message to the Prime Minister's Office, requesting a meeting between a senior Israeli official and Jarba, who is currently headquartered in Cairo. Egypt, which has not actively opposed the Syrian regime, is preparing a 'Plan B' in the event that Syrian President Bashar Assad should fall.
In a message delivered to Ma'ariv Hashavua, the diplomatic bureau of the Ghad al-Suri movement explained its position in regard to the decision to establish a federal regime in Syria. This message was presumably sent after it received the blessing of the movement's chairman Jarba, who previously served as president of the Syrian National Coalition, which is the main coalition of opposition groups in the Syrian Civil War.
"The tyrannical regime, through its control over Syrian society, has managed to disintegrate all of Syria. It gifted those loyal to it with special favors, and made sure its opponents were put in prison and pushed to the margins of society. The regime also cultivated strife between minority groups in order to preserve its own narrow interests," the message reads. "In doing so, it turned Syria into a volcano, waiting to erupt and fix its national, intellectual, political and societal course, by unifying the people and land. Thus the revolution began, waving the flag of unification for all the Syrian people. This revolution did not set a goal of establishing a central, federal or any other kind of regime. It left this to be decided by the Syrian people."
The message further states: "As political and military events unfolded, including regional and international intervention in Syria, states and federations arose, taking advantage of the power vacuum, conflicts and regional war for Syria, in order to force facts on the ground without the agreement of the people, which can only be achieved through a referendum."
"The Ghad al-Suri movement believes in rights for all of Syrian society, chief among them political, national, cultural and educational rights, based on a doctrine of equality of rights and obligations within a broad administration, not a centralized one. Such a regime would grant provinces, areas and administrative districts the full right to manage their own civil, religious and educational matters in keeping with international human rights treaties," the Syrian opposition movement writes.
"We the Ghad al-Suri movement call on all of the national forces to topple the tyranny and to build a diverse democracy. Afterward we will build the regime which is agreed upon by all of the national Syrian forces and movements and guarantees all of their rights."