New Delhi: Syria on Saturday accused "external" forces of trying to destabilise the country with help of "radical Islamic" groups and the US of backing Muslim Brotherhood which was "responsible" for bloodshed.

Syrian Ambassador Riad Abbas, giving an account of the efforts to normalise the situation, said the President has already started the process of holding "national dialogue" with all groups but those behind the unrest are not coming forward as they only want to "topple" the government.

Alleging that "external forces" are trying to destabilize the country by encouraging the "extremist religious groups" like Muslim Brotherhood and other outfits, he said the country
has been targeted for raising the voice for creation of a separate Palestinian states, besides other reasons.

"Syria is the only secular state in the area. We have been supporting formation of a Palestinian state and that is why there are efforts to destabilise the country. These
external forces have their own agenda," Abbas told reporters here.

He alleged the US has been supporting "radical outfit Muslim Brotherhood which has been behind the unrest and bloodshed in the country".

"The Americans have themselves said that they have been supporting the Muslim Brotherhood," he said adding the banned outfit, along with some other "extreme religious groups", was behind the bloodshed.

Asked whether international observers will be allowed during polls which President Assad has announced, he evaded a direct reply but said Syria never believes in interfering
affairs of other countries.

According to the UN, at least 2,600 people have been killed in the unrest in Syria since popular protests first broke out in mid-March.

Asked about the government crackdown on the protesters, the Ambassador said the security the forces have been taking "maximum precaution" in dealing with the protests and accused those behind the unrest of resorting to widespread violation human rights and killing innocent people.

"The President has already presented a national agenda. He has already initiated a national dialogue process. But they do not want to come for talks as they only want to topple the
government," he said.

Talking about the election, Abbas said no religious group or party will be allowed to participate in the polls as it will affect the "democratic" character of the country.

"The parliamentary elections will take place in February. But we cannot allow religious groups to participate as they have already said that they will force the Christian people to
leave the country. We cannot allow this to happen as it will affect the secular nature of the country," he said.

On whether elections will be free and fair, he said the country was embarking on democratic reform and the February polls will "different" from polls held earlier in the country.

Dubbing the media coverage of the unrest as "biased", he said things are being showed in a distorted manner.

(Agencies)