Clinton meets with Syrian opposition figures

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GENEVA (AP) -- U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is holding a rare meeting with Syrian opposition figures, all from a network of political dissidents seeking to oust Syrian dictator Bashar Assad.

Clinton told the group she wants to hear their plans to establish a new democratic government in Syria. Her invitation was a step short of endorsement, but a clear sign the US is considering it.

She told them, "Obviously, a democratic transition is more than removing the Assad regime. It means setting Syria on the path of the rule of law."

The seven activists are exiles in Europe and belong to the opposition Syrian National Council.

It's only the second time she's held such a session since the U.S. decided Assad must leave office.

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Lee reported from Washington.

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