World powers push Syria's opposition to unite
UNITED NATIONS (AP) - Efforts to draw together the fragmented foes of Syrian President Bashar Assad could lead to direct talks between the leader's regime and his opponents, a key official said after talks on the sidelines of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly.
Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari on Friday proposed plans to broker discussions for a political transition in Syria - amid the paralysis at the UN Security Council which has cast a pall over the annual gathering of world leaders in New York.
Mr Zebari told The Associated Press in an interview that he made the offer to bring together Syria's regime and opposition at a meeting on Friday between nine representatives of anti-Assad groups and the Friends of Syria - a coalition which includes the United States (US), the European Union and the Arab League.
He acknowledged that the UN and Arab League joint envoy on Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, would need to take the plan forward.