The United States has joined a growing number of nations in recognising the Syrian opposition coalition as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people.
The move follows that of France, Britain, Turkey and the Gulf states.
It was during an interview on US television, that President Barack Obama made his announcement:
“We’ve made a decision that the Syrian opposition coalition is now inclusive enough, is reflective and representative enough of the Syrian population, that we consider them the legitimate representative of the Syrian people in opposition to the Assad regime, so we will provide them recognition. And obviously with that recognition comes responsibilities on the part of that coalition.”
President Obama’s announcement came on the eve of a meeting of Syrian opposition leaders and their international allies in Morocco.
While refusing to provide arms to the rebels, his recognition is a diplomatic boost to the anti-Assad political cause.