Syria's political opposition has struggled to prove its relevance amid the civil war under a leadership largely made up of academics and exiled politicians. With its relaunch as a new organization earlier this month, it has taken a different tack by choosing Mouaz al-Khatib as its head. The 52-year-old cleric-turned-activist is respected by groups from across the political spectrum and has preached sectarian unity.
Speaking in in Cairo, where the 13-group alliance is now based, Al-Khatib told reporters that the Coalition will consider the concerns of Syrian factions who have not joined the new umbrella group.
"We will listen to our brothers who have not joined this alliance," al-Khatib said after a meeting with Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr. "We will keep in contact with them for more cooperation in the interest of the Syrian people," al-Khatib said.
So far, France has gone the furthest in recognizing the Coalition, declaring the Doha-formed alliance as the representative of the Syrian people and accepting one of its members as the group's ambassador to Paris on Saturday.
The United States and Italy have both recognized its status as a representative, but stopped short of conferring formal diplomatic recognition. Turkey last week recognized it as "the legitimate representative" of the Syrian people.
Many Syrians, particularly those in the capital Damascus where fighting and demonstrations have been relatively light, fear the involvement of Islamic extremists in the civil war. Jabhat al-Nusra has claimed responsibility for a number of devastating bombings in the capital and other cities, targeting state security institutions and military intelligence branches there.
Also on Monday, a Kurdish group has clashed with rebel units in the city of Ras al-Ayn, a Turkish official said. The infighting among rebel units comes just days after opposition fighters ousted Assad's troops from the strategic city in northeastern al-Hasaka province along the border with Turkey.