BRUSSELS - The European Union is ready to engage with the Syrian National Council and other opposition groups, a spokesman for the EU's foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said on Wednesday.
Asked about French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe's comment that France backed a possible humanitarian corridor in Syria and considers the Syrian council a legitimate partner to work with, spokesman Michael Mann said: "The High Representative met yesterday with leaders of the Syrian National Council.
"During the meeting she stressed the importance of the opposition maintaining a clear commitment to a peaceful and non-sectarian approach," he said.
"The EU stands ready to engage with the Syrian National Council and other representative members of the opposition who adhere to non-violence and democratic values," he said.
Addressing the need for humanitarian response, he said: "Protection of civilians in Syria is an increasingly urgent and important aspect of responding to the events in the country."