Syrian opposition SNC wont participate in Russia-sponsored congress: spokesman

BEIRUT (Reuters) - The Syrian National Coalition, a group fighting the Syrian government, said on Wednesday it opposed a Russian-sponsored congress of Syrian groups, calling it an attempt to circumvent U.N.-backed Geneva peace talks that aim for a political transition for the war-torn country.

“The Coalition will not participate in any negotiations with the regime outside Geneva or without U.N. sponsorship,” SNC spokesman Ahmad Ramadan told Reuters.

“Russia’s call for a conference for Syrians in Sochi is an attempt to circumvent Geneva and the international desire for a political transition in Syria in accordance with U.N. security council resolutions,” the Turkey-based SNC said.

Reporting by Lisa Barrington, editing by Larry King