Monday, June 3, 2013

US, fed up with 'Syrian Coalition', withholds pledged $millions

"The United States is withholding $63 million that it had pledged to the main Syrian opposition organization because the Obama administration is frustrated with the group’s disarray and is searching for more credible partners to support in the rebellion against Syrian President Bashar Assad, knowledgeable officials said Friday.The decision not to fund the Syrian Opposition Coalition contrasts sharply with the Obama administration’s continued public expressions of confidence in the group ...
But U.S. officials said privately that they are fed up with the group’s inability to organize, appoint a government-in-exile or reach decisions on a wide range of issues. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity so as to more freely discuss sensitive diplomacy.State Department officials are fond of repeating that they’ve pledged $250 million in nonlethal aid to boost the Syrian opposition. In reality, however, only a fraction of that – roughly $54 million – has been delivered, and almost none of it has gone directly to the coalition because “it’s obviously been a very unstable organization,” as one official put it..."

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