National dialogue committee…open and rational dealing with issues
Cultural figures and academics take an optimistic view of setting up a committee for national dialogue among the Syrian people of all stripes, considering it an advanced step forward to forge visions for dealing with issues and topics as to ensure equal rights and duties for all. Walid Ikhlassi, Member of the Committee, says that President Bashar al-Assad has exceeded expectations in the proposals he made during his meeting with the Committee’s members, adding that the President ”showed that he could sense the problems of society which are on the table to be discussed by the Committee before being referred to final discussion.” Ikhlassi saw that national dialogue is based on the idea that citizens work in sync to materialize joint visions, which necessitates that everyone shows awareness and rationality. Ikhlassi said that the dialogue’s focal point is the Elections’ Law as a key point which is directly linked to laws and reforms. Member of the People’s Assembly Mohammad Habash said the committee was formed at the right time after the general amnesty decree was issued, adding the Committee has a major responsibility and should leave the door open for an open national dialogue. General Coordinator of the Syrian Network for Human Rights Ahmad Khazem said forming the committee would help tackle national issues through laying out programs and mechanisms to get past the current stage. He pointed out that laying the bases for a national dialogue should take into consideration political, social and religious variety and focus on reform programs proposed by President al-Assad and the citizens’ needs. Vice-Dean of the Journalism Faculty Nahla Issa described forming the committee as a highly significant step, which proves the seriousness of launching endurable changes and reforms.