Top Syrian diplomat in London quits “violent and oppressive” regime
Syria’s top diplomat in the UK has quit his senior post saying that he is no longer willing to represent a “violent and oppressive” regime.
Khaled al-Ayoubi, Syria’s Charge d’Affaires in London, told the Foreign Office that he was “no longer willing” to represent the Assad government amid the brutal repression of rebels.
The announcement came after the UN reported 200,000 Syrians have fled Syria’s second largest city, Aleppo, where government forces have been bombarding the rebels for 11 days.
The Foreign Office said that Mr al-Ayoubi’s departure is “another blow to the Assad regime. It illustrates the revulsion and despair the regime’s actions are provoking amongst Syrians from all walks of life, inside the country and abroad”.
“We urge others around Bashar Al-Assad to follow Mr al-Ayoubi’s example, to disassociate themselves from the crimes being committed against the Syrian people and to support a peaceful and free future for Syria.”
The departure of al-Ayoubi is yet another blow for the Syrian regime following last week’s defection of the representatives to the UAE and Cyprus.
The Syrian government has also been hit by a number of defections by military commanders.
A Foreign Office spokesman said that al-Ayoubi was staying in a safe location in the UK and was in contact with British Officials. However, he has yet to switch his allegiance to the opposition.