BEIRUT - Syria warned on Sunday it would retaliate against any country that formally recognizes the National Council set up by opponents of President Bashar Assad.
"We will take tough measures against any state which recognizes this illegitimate council," Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem told a news conference broadcast by Syrian television.
The formation of the council has been welcomed by Western countries including the United States and France. However, unlike the transitional council set up by Libyan rebels who overthrew Muammar Gaddafi, they have not offered it any formal recognition.
The United Nations says 2,900 people have been killed in Assad's crackdown on six months of mainly peaceful protests. On Saturday, activists said security forces killed at least two people when they opened fire on tens of thousands of mourners at the funeral of a Kurdish opposition figure.