24/08/2012

Civil war is settling in Syria with no prospect of an end

Syrian civil war continues to rage since the beginning of protests in March 2011. The number of victims is estimated at 23,000 now, according to the Syrian Observatory of Human Rights, not to mention thousands of refugees in Turkey and neighbouring countries. The battles of Damascus and Aleppo are continuing, but the alawite government of Bashar al-Assad, and Sunni opponents majority, fail to win militarily, despite the support in weapons and men given to each other by foreign powers.

The United Nations remains divided, China and Russia continue to impose their veto in the Security Council in favour of any international military intervention. These two powers consider the Syrian affair to be settled by the Syrians themselves. Kofi Annan, former Secretary General, threw in the towel because his mediation has failed, and was replaced by Lakhdar Brahimi, 78 years old, the experienced Algerian diplomat, as a new mediator. The Mission of the 300 UN observers deployed in Syria last March to monitor the cease-fire ended on August 20 because of the continuation of fighting.

President Obama threatens to intervene militarily if chemical weapons were used by the regime. The Syrian army and rebel fool are both accused of crimes against humanity. The Arab League has once again condemned the regime of Bashar al-Assad and stopped any economic cooperation.

The Syrian Deputy Prime Minister Jamil Qadri suggested in Moscow that the government would be prepared to discuss the resignation of President Bashar Assad in the process of negotiations with the opposition.
Meanwhile, Lebanon, which was occupied by Syria for 30 years, remains divided between supporters and opponents of Damascus. Tensions between Shia and Sunni Lebanese are increasing and the Syrian threatens to spread to neighbouring Lebanon.
Given the obstacles to the Security Council, we can only start to call for dialogue and reconciliation. War strengthens war.

PIERRE COLOT