More than 500 protesters have been killed in Syria as they protest against the rule of President Bashar Assad. The use of deadly force by security forces in the country has been condemned by the Foreign Office in Britain and as a result Dr Sami Khiyami, the Syrian Ambassador has had his invite to the Royal wedding withdrawn.
The decision to invite the Ambassador to the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton had been criticised and this morning Foreign Secretary William Hague decided that the presence of Dr Khiyami at the ceremony would be unacceptable and that he should not attend the event.
from the Foreign Office reads:
In the light of this week’s attacks against civilians by the Syrian security forces, which we have condemned, the Foreign Secretary has decided that the presence of the Syrian Ambassador at the Royal Wedding would be unacceptable and that he should not attend. Buckingham Palace shares the view of the Foreign Office that it is not considered appropriate for the Syrian Ambassador to attend the wedding.
The Foreign Office said that the UK condemned the use of force against the peaceful pro-democracy protests of the Syrian people.
On Tuesday Dr Sami Khiyami was summoned to the Foreign Office by Permanent Under Secretary Simon Fraser and warned that the violence must stop and that the security forces must be restrained. Simon Fraser made clear that the "perpetrators of violence against civilians would be held to account and that it was vital that the Government of Syria responded to the legitimate demands of the Syrian people with reform and not repression. Syria was now at a fork in the road: if violence stopped immediately there was still an opportunity to follow the path of reform."
The ruling Baath party in Syria has seen 200 members resign over the violence used against the protesters.