Syrian diplomat at UN in Geneva joins opposition

By the Associated Press | August 13, 2012 | 10:40 AM EDT

In this citizen journalism image provided by Shaam News Network SNN, taken on Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012, Syrians carry a large revolutionary flag during a demonstration in Kafar Souseh, Damascus, Syria. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network, SNN)THE ASSOCIATED PRESS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS CITIZEN JOURNALIST IMAGE

GENEVA (AP) — A Syrian diplomat working at the United Nations in Geneva has joined his country's opposition after deciding he can no longer represent President Bashar Assad's regime.

A spokesman for the U.N. Human Rights Council, Rolando Gomez, identified the Syrian as Danny al-Baaj and described him as a junior member of his country's U.N. mission.

Syria is not a member of the 47-nation council, but al-Baaj worked with it as part of his duties. The uprising in Syria has been a major concern of the council since starting in March 2011.

A growing number of Syrian officials have switched to the opposition as the months have worn on.

Al-Baaj's family said he decided several days ago he could no longer represent Assad, but has not determined his next move.