News / Middle East

Britain Pushing Harder for International Resolution in Syria

Selah Hennessy
As opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad meet in Doha, Britain is pushing for greater international involvement in the ongoing crisis in Syria. Some analysts say that pursuing a political solution, rather than a military one, is Britain's best play for Syria.

In Jordan, British Prime Minister David Cameron visited Syrians in Zaatari camp, which houses about 30,000 refugees, and he said the international community needs to put a new focus on solving Syria's conflict.

"We want Assad to go. We want to see a peaceful, political transition and a safe country for the future. But right now, the international community has to recognize, that what we have done is not enough," said Cameron.

While on a trip to Thailand, Britain's Foreign Secretary, William Hague, presented a written statement to the British parliament that Britain will begin talks with the armed opposition in Syria. But he said the rebels will not be supplied with arms.

Diplomacy has been largely fruitless, with Syria's allies at the U.N. Security Council, Russia and China, repeatedly blocking attempts to hit Syria with tougher sanctions.

In a televised interview that aired Friday, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad warned the international community against getting involved.

"It is not about reconciling with the people, and it is not about reconciliation between the Syrians and the Syrians; we do not have a civil war," said Assad. "It is about terrorism and the support coming from abroad to terrorists to destabilize Syria. This is our war."

Alia Brahimi, from the London School of Economics, said if Britain does want to help resolve the crisis in Syria, it should focus on the political rather than the military approach.

"To look at extending intense and perhaps military support to the armed opposition in Syria is very dangerous because that kind of effort so far, particularly on the part of some Gulf countries, has only led to the exacerbation of the conflict," said Brahimi.

A video, which cannot be independently verified, appears to show clashes in Aleppo in northwestern Syria, part of escalating violence.  

As battles continue inside Syria, the Syrian opposition has been holding talks in Qatar aimed at forming a political alternative to Assad's rule. Up until now, sharp divisions within the opposition have hampered attempts to oust Assad.

Forming a united political front may be the only chance to bring peace to Syria, though, according to Michael Kerr, of King's College London.

"At the minute China and Russia are resisting any efforts to push Assad out without something that will replace him that does not negate their interests in Syria," said Kerr.

Britain and its Western allies are banking that replacement can come out of the opposition meeting in Doha. Until then, thousands of Syrians continue to flee into neighboring countries.

You May Like

US Storm Falls Short of Severe Predictions, Yet Affects Millions

Governors of several East Coast states close schools, order travel bans, urge people to stay home as snowfall, heavy winds, flooding continue in areas More

Millions of Displaced Nigerians Struggle with Daily Existence

Government acknowledges over a million people were displaced in 2014 due to fight against Boko Haram insurgency More

Facebook: Internal Error to Blame for Outages

Temporary outage appeared to spill over and temporarily slow or block traffic to other major Internet sites More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Grin Olsson from: Alaska, USA
November 10, 2012 6:44 AM
The situation in Syria is tragic. As an American I'm concerned over requests for United Nations and Western intervention where two different ideologies of "Islam" is at hand, yet, when the clashes are between nations of Islam and secular or Christians, there is no request or help from Islamic nations to stop the violence.

Another issue is that the Sunni rebels are being supported by Qatar and Saudi Arabia the very same nations whose citizens bombed American soil at 9/11. Maybe the West is on the wrong side in this conflict as the Syrian govern is secular and protects all Islamic faiths including Christians and Kurds.

Maybe someone can enlighten me?


by: Anonymous
November 10, 2012 12:09 AM
The only way Assad would leave Syria is if he was either a) killed or b) pulled by the hair physically.

Assad doesn't care one bit about the country of Syria. Calling the civillians terrorists, blaming the west, and denying atrocities commited by his regime are the only thing he can do to try and stay in Syria a bit longer. It isnt working, everyday the hatred for Assad is growing more and more by not only Syrian Civillians but also people worldwide.

When Assad gets captured and if he gets a trial and sentenced in Syria lets just hope it is a Syrian Sword that serves his justice.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visiti
X
Aru Pande
January 26, 2015 9:33 PM
U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visit

U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video US, EU Threaten New Russia Sanctions Over Ukraine

U.S. President Barack Obama has blamed Russia for an attack by Ukrainian separatists that left dozens dead in the port of Mariupol and cast further doubt on the viability of last year’s cease-fire with the Kyiv government. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington.
Video

Video White House Grapples With Yemen Counterterrorism Strategy

Reports say the U.S. has carried out a drone strike on suspected militants in Yemen, the first after President Barack Obama offered reassurances the U.S. is continuing its counterterrorism operations in the country. The future of those operations has been in question following the collapse last week of Yemen’s government. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Kerry Warns Against Violence in Nigeria Election

US Secretary of State John Kerry visited Nigeria Sunday in a show of the level of concern within the U.S. and the international community over next month’s presidential election. Chris Stein reports.
Video

Video Zoo Animals Show Their Artistic Sides

The pursuit of happiness is so important, America's founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence. Any zookeeper will tell you animals need enrichment, just like humans do. So painting, and even music, are part of the Smithsonian National Zoo's program to keep the animals happy. VOA’s June Soh met some animal artists at the zoo in Washington. Faith Lapidus narrates.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Saudi, Yemen Developments Are Sudden Complications for Obama

The death of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah and the collapse of Yemen’s government have cast further uncertainty on U.S. efforts to fight militants in the Middle East and also contain Iran’s influence in the region. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports on the new complications facing the Obama administration and its Middle East policy.
Video

Video Progress, Some Areas of Disagreement in Cuba Talks

U.S. and Cuban officials are reporting progress from initial talks in Havana on re-establishing diplomatic ties. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State (for Western Hemisphere Affairs) Roberta Jacobson said while there was agreement on a broad range of issues, there also are some “profound disagreements” between Washington and Havana. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins has the story.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video S. Korean Businesses Want to End Trade Restrictions With North

Business leaders in South Korea are calling for President Park Geun-hye to ease trade restrictions with North Korea that were put in place in 2010 after the sinking of a South Korean warship.Pro-business groups argue that expanding trade and investment is not only good for business, it is also good for long-term regional peace and security. VOA’s Brian Padden reports.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid