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Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood says committed to democracy, fight against terrorism

Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood group on Sunday said it was committed to a civil state that respects human rights and sees the participation of all, in a bid to dispel fears that the group has plans to take over power in Syria after the collapse of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

The Brotherhood leader, Ali Sadreddine Bayanouni, told a press conference in Istanbul that his group was committed to “a civil and democratic republican state with a parliamentary system, in which all the people are treated equal regardless of faith or ethnicity.”

Bayanouni added that his group is also committed to a state that respects human rights, including “the freedom of belief, thought, and of expression.”

The group said a post-Asaad Syria should be built on “dialogue and participation,” adding that it supports a state that "upholds the value of the people without tutelage based on a system of separation of powers.”

Seeking to reassure the West, Bayanouni said his groups is committed to” renouncing and fighting terrorism and respecting international treaties.”

The Islamist group called for a comprehensive national dialogue between all Syrian ethnic, religious and political groups to prepare for the post-Assad era.

He said he was confident that the next “Friends of Syria” meeting will be held in Damascus.

Bassam Ishaq, member of the Istanbul-based Syrian National Council, told Al Arabiya that the Muslim Brotherhood group will be part of a national accord for the new Syria.

“The regime has long used the Muslim Brother “as a scarecrow to frighten Syrians and tell them that the alternative will be worse.”

“It was important for the group to come out today and explain its position and its vision for the future of Syria,” Ishaq said.

Meanwhile, Free Syrian Army General Mustafa Ahmad al-Sheikh told Al Arabiya that the armed opposition received pledges for military aid and that the recent formation of a military council grouping all rebel commanders was meant to ensure that weapons received don’t go into the wrong hands.

Head of the opposition Free Syrian Army, Riad al-Asaad, had said announced the formation of the military council, which includes Syria’s most senior army deserter GeneralSheikh.