Syria opposition group to open New York, Washington offices

UNITED NATIONS - The Syrian National Coalition will open offices in New York and Washington as it prepares for meetings of Syrian opposition leaders with US officials and UN Security Council members, a UN envoy and a Syrian opposition source said on Tuesday.
"That is an important step and it's obviously a potential vehicle for inviting over ... (coalition leader Moaz) Alkhatib to come to New York at some point," a senior Western diplomat said on condition of anonymity.
Najib Ghadbian, an Syrian-American professor at the University of Arkansas, would head the New York office, he added. Ghadbian could not be reached immediately for comment.
Another diplomat said the purpose of the New York office would be to open a channel of communication with the UN Security Council, which has long been divided over Syria's 22-month-long conflict that has killed an estimated 60,000 people.