Syrian Opposition Forms Military Bureau
Rebels say they have so far kept the government out of Homs
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Mar 1, 2012 7:20 AM CST
Free Syrian Army supporters chant anti government slogans under snowfall on the outskirts of Idlib , north Syria, Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012.   (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)

(Newser) – Syria's main political opposition group today announced that it was forming a "military bureau" to unify and coordinate the Free Syrian army and other armed opposition groups opposing Bashar al-Assad. Speaking in Paris, the Syrian National Council's leader said they had originally hoped for a nonviolent revolt, but now felt the need to avoid "chaos" and take charge of the flow of weapons into the country, the BBC reports. The move came as the UN Council on Human Rights passed a resolution condemning Syria's "widespread and systemic violations" against civilians.

Only three countries, Russia, China, and Cuba, voted against the resolution. Six Gulf Arab states say they will meet with Russia next week to "express their disappointment" with its persistent support of the regime. Meanwhile, Syrian officials say their troops have taken Baba Amr, and are "mopping up" the resistance. But opposition activists refute that, saying snowfall slowed the assault. "They've been trying to enter the neighborhood … but the Free Syrian Army is fighting back," one said. But "it's just miserable here." Many residents are without power, and some are melting snow as a source of water.

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