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Syrian opposition rejects UN plans

Syrian opposition groups have rejected a UN-brokered plan for peaceful political transition in the country.

Senior figures called the proposals "ambiguous" and a "waste of time", and vowed not to negotiate with president Bashar Assad or members of his "murderous" regime.

An international conference in Geneva on Saturday accepted UN special envoy Kofi Annan's plan for the creation of a transitional government, but at Russia's insistence the compromise agreement left the door open to Syria's president being part of the interim administration.

The US backed away from insisting that the plan should explicitly call for Mr Assad to have no role in a new Syrian government, hoping the concession would encourage Russia to put greater pressure on its ally to end the violent crackdown which the opposition says has claimed more than 14,000 lives.

Syrian opposition figures rejected any notion of sharing in a transition with Mr Assad.

Veteran Syrian opposition figure Haitham Maleh asked: "Every day I ask myself, 'Do they not see how the Syrian people are being slaughtered?'

"It is a catastrophe, the country has been destroyed - and they want us then to sit with the killer?"

Mr Maleh described the agreement reached in Geneva as a waste of time and of "no value on the ground".

"They Syrian people are the ones who will decide the battle on the ground, not those sitting in Geneva or New York or anywhere else," he said.

Bassma Kodmani, a Paris-based spokesperson for Syria's main opposition group, the Syrian National Council, said the agreement is "ambiguous" and lacks a mechanism or timetable for implementation.

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