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Syrian opposition elects Hadi el-Bahra as new leader

US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) and then leader of the Western and Saudi-backed Syrian National Coalition Ahmad Jarba (L) meet on June 27, 2014 at King Abdulaziz International Airport in the Saudi city of JeddahThe Syrian National Coalition, the main exiled opposition group seeking the overthrow of Bashar al-Assad, on Wednesday elected Saudi-based Syrian opposition figure Hadi el-Bahra as its new president. “Hadi el-Bahra was elected president of the coalition with 62 votes,” the coalition said in a statement on its Facebook page after the early morning vote at the meeting in the Black Sea resort of Sile outside Istanbul in Turkey. His nearest rival, Mowafaq Nayrabiyeh, won 41 votes, it added. He succeeds Ahmad Jarba, who headed the coalition from July 2013 but failed in efforts to unite the opposition and obtain significant Western military support.

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