BRUSSELS, November 19 (RIA Novosti) – The 27 members of the European Union recognized on Monday the broad opposition coalition created in Syria earlier this month as a legitimate representative of the Syrian people.
The decision was announced in a statement released after a meeting of the 27 foreign ministers of EU countries.
The decision does not equal full diplomatic recognition, which is to be granted by each EU member individually. France already granted such recognition to the new opposition group, the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces, which is set to establish its own embassy in Paris.
The coalition, formed at talks in Qatar, claims to represent 80 percent of all opponents of besieged Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Official Damascus is struggling since March 2011 to suppress public protests that turned into a full-scale civil war.
The coalition was earlier recognized by Turkey and several members of the Arab League.