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Gulf Arab States Recognize New Syrian Opposition Coalition

Syrian Air Strikes Hit Rebel-Held Town Of Ras Al-Aini
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November 12, 2012
Syrian helicopters and jets launched air strikes on the rebel-held town of Ras al-Ain on November 12, sending civilians fleeing across the border into neighboring Turkey. Amateur footage posted on a social media website purports to show the aftermath of the air strikes. Reuters video

WATCH: Syrian helicopters and jets launched air strikes on the rebel-held town of Ras al-Ain on November 12, sending civilians fleeing across the border into neighboring Turkey. Amateur footage posted on a social media website purports to show the aftermath of the air strikes. (Reuters video)

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The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) says its six member states have decided to recognize Syria's newly formed opposition coalition as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people.

GCC Secretary-General Abdulatif al-Zayani said in a statement on November 12 that the nations of the oil-rich bloc will give support to the Syrian National Coalition to "realize the aspirations of the Syrian people."

The GCC comprises Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar, and Kuwait.

The Arab League later recognized the group as the "legitimate representative" of Syria's opposition.

Meeting in Cairo late on November 12, Arab League foreign ministers called on other groups that oppose Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to join the coalition.

An array of groups opposed to Assad's government agreed on November 11 to form a new, broader coalition following four days of talks in Qatar.
Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari (R) talks with an Omani foreign affairs representative at the Arab League foreign ministers' meeting on Syria at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo on November 12.Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari (R) talks with an Omani foreign affairs representative at the Arab League foreign ministers' meeting on Syria at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo on November 12.
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Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari (R) talks with an Omani foreign affairs representative at the Arab League foreign ministers' meeting on Syria at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo on November 12.
Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari (R) talks with an Omani foreign affairs representative at the Arab League foreign ministers' meeting on Syria at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo on November 12.

The agreement was welcomed by the United States and a number of Western states.

Russia urged the new body to negotiate with the Assad regime and to reject outside interference.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP

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