ISTANBUL: Syrian opposition leaders met Saturday for a second day of talks with hopes of inking the founding principles of a future Syria, now tarnished by a 16-month long bloodshed and political chaos.
Major Syrian opposition groups gathered once more in Istanbul under the umbrella of the main opposition, the Syrian National Council (SNC), recognised by most factions as the official voice, and a "legimitate representative of Syrians" by Western and Arab powers.
Saturday's round looks at developing a declaration that sets out the basic principles of a democratic Syria, to be implemented after an eventual fall of the Damascus regime, said a political bureau member of the SNC.
"There are disagreements, but the atmosphere is good," Louay Safi told referring to the cohesion among the participants, some of whom had walked out of a March meeting, refusing to sign a similar document.
This new version is expected to cover a wider range of topics, including the transition to a democratic Syria, and has a better chance of receiving more support and therefore signatures from factions, according to Safi.
On Saturday, the only major absentee was the National Coordination Committee for Democratic Change (NCCDC), a large group of Arab nationalists, Kurds and socialists, which said technical problems prevented their participation.
At the end of the two-day workshop, Syrian opposition groups hope to be ready for a major Syria conference to be held in Cairo under the auspices of the Arab League, at a date to be announced later.