Syria Opposition's New PM Comes From ... Texas
US citizen Ghassan Hitto new leader in rebel-held areas
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Mar 19, 2013 2:06 AM CDT
Syrian National Coalition for Opposition and Revolutionary Forces members meet in Istanbul, Turkey.   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – Syria's main opposition council has elected American citizen Ghassan Hitto to be prime minister of a new interim government responsible for overseeing refugees and rebel-held areas. Hitto, 50, was born in Damascus but has lived in the US for decades. He abruptly quit his job at a Texas electronics firm last fall to move to Turkey to help coordinate the funneling of aid to rebel-held areas, Al Jazeera reports. Hitto emerged as winner with 35 out of 48 votes after a full day of closed-door meetings among coalition members.

Hitto, who opposes talks with Bashar al-Assad, says an interim government is necessary to unite rebel forces and keep Syria from becoming even more chaotic, the New York Times reports. "There is always a possibility that this regime might fall suddenly," he says. "And we can’t avoid a political vacuum in the country and the ensuing chaos unless there is a transitional government." Hitto says he decided to get more involved with the Syrian opposition after his 25-year-old American-born son sneaked off to join rebel fighters last year.

More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
US Citizen Picked to Head Rival Syrian Government is...
6%
63%
1%
18%
3%
9%
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Comments
Showing 2 of 2 comments
Neuman
Mar 19, 2013 10:17 AM CDT
Bush relative?
MattB
Mar 19, 2013 6:47 AM CDT
I hope this idea works better than the Iraqi one! They will only see him as the puppet he is. This will be an interesting movie.