Syrian tribes opposed to the embattled regime of Bashar al-Assad said Monday they would join forces in an "Assembly of Tribes," Syrian opposition members and media reported.
"Today we proclaim, as children of all tribes, an Assembly of Tribes," opposition Syrian National Council (SNC) member Mahmut al-Maslat said in a statement read out on behalf of the assembly.
Tribal affiliation plays a major role in Syrian politics, along with religion, ideology and regional origin.
A large number of Syrian tribes will now be "sharing data and give an answer to our people's questions," Maslat said, quoted by conservative Islamic Turkish newspaper Zaman on its website.
Tribes represented in the new assembly were "from across Syria and represent more than 40 percent" of all Syrian tribes, the statement said.
Ahmed el-Jaburi, a participant in the news conference reported by Zaman, said the tribes were mainly Arab.
"There were some disagreements between some tribes, but all Arabs united and buried their differences," Jaburi said.
SNC executive committee member Bassma Qodmani confirmed the creation of the assembly by telephone, but would not be drawn on how representative it was.
Qodmani said some but not all assembly members were also part of the SNC.
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