Time for change in Syria, asserts Mursi
Cairo, September 5, 2012
Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi said on Wednesday that the time had come for changing the government in Syria and that a quartet of regional states proposed by Cairo to discuss the Syrian crisis would meet.
Mursi, making his first presidential address to the Arab League in Cairo, said the quartet of states would include Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey and Egypt.
'The quartet which Egypt has called for will meet now,' Mursi told the Arab foreign ministers, although he did not give details of the gathering in his speech.
An Egyptian delegate said the president's comments meant there were contacts between the four states to discuss what action could be taken but that the formation of the quartet was still under discussion and no time had been set for their representatives to meet.
Tehran has backed Syria's government but the three other states want President Bashar al-Assad to stand down.
Analysts said the group was unlikely to agree on how to handle the crisis and might not meet in one place, but said the initiative indicated the newly elected president's determination to put Egypt back at the centre of regional politics.
On the Syrian crisis, Mursi said the time had come in Syria for 'change and not wasting time speaking of reform. This time has passed now. Now it is time for change.' - Reuters