News / Middle East

Failure of Syria Talks Signal Conflict May Be Long Struggle

The Joint Special Representative for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi (C) stands with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov (R) and U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns as they meet at the United Nations European headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, January 11, 2013.
The Joint Special Representative for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi (C) stands with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov (R) and U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns as they meet at the United Nations European headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, January 11, 2013.
Al Pessin
As senior U.S. and Russian negotiators - along with the United Nations peace envoy - again failed to find a breakthrough in Syria talks on Friday, analysts say a solution could be a long time coming.
 
​Through the 21-plus months of Syria's civil war, there has been no shortage of diplomacy, but a significant shortage of progress.
 
Attacks from both sides continue to destroy Syria's cities and towns, kill tens of thousands of people, and leave hundreds of thousands as refugees in mud-soaked camps in neighboring countries.

"There's little sign that we're any closer to any political solution to this crisis," said Chris Doyle, director of the Council for Arab-British Understanding. "Because there are divisions in the international community between the United States and Russia, between key regional powers like Saudi Arabia and Iran, there is not a core constituency who are pushing for one single solution to the crisis in Syria."

Failure of Latest Talks Signal Syrian Conflct May Be Long Strugglei
X
Al Pessin
January 11, 2013 8:36 PM
As senior U.S. and Russian negotiators - along with the United Nations peace envoy - again failed to find a breakthrough in Syria talks on Friday, analysts say a solution could be a long time coming.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad remains defiant, as he did during a recent speech in front of enthusiastic supporters in Damascus.

Assad's eroding support
 
But Doyle and other experts say there is some erosion in Mr. Assad's international support. His friends in Moscow are signaling a willingness to see him fall, indicating they would accept an orderly transition as long as Russia's relationship with a new Syrian government is assured.
 
Analyst Anthony Skinner of the Maplecroft consulting firm said that is why Russia is more willing to deal with the Syrian opposition.
 
"Russia is hedging its bets,” he said. “It hasn't fundamentally changed its position, but it's trying to establish a greater channel of communication and develop relations with the opposition."
 
The Iranian factor
 
But Skinner said the situation is quite different for Syria's other main foreign supporter, Iran.
 
"The relationship between Tehran and Damascus is so fundamental to the regime in Iran, in terms of its own agenda domestically and also in the region at large, that it would not make sense for it to engage in a massive reversal," he said.
 
The experts do not see any dramatic change in the Syria deadlock any time soon.  But Chris Doyle puts some of the onus on the opposition and the West.
 
"We need a transition process,” Doyle said. “If it means that the president has to be there, even as a symbolic figure, for some months before he is ushered out, maybe that is something the parties need to consider in order to find a way out."
 
Doyle said without some sort of dramatic change on one or both sides, the fighting could drag on indefinitely, and there may be little left of Syria for whoever wins.​

You May Like

British Fighters On Frontline of ISIS Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign Jihadists More

Audio Hit Song Delivers Ebola Message in Liberia

'Ebola in Town' has danceable beat, while also delivering serious message about avoiding infection More

Video New Technology Gives Surgeons Unprecedented Views of Patients’ Bodies

Technology offers real-time, interactive, medical visualization and is multi-dimensional More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Michael from: USA
January 13, 2013 8:09 AM
Tehran cannot make a 'massive reversal' on Syria because if it did occur, it would not work as the resulting goal could never fit the situation on the ground which changes hourly. We can't assume that there is a legum majoris guiding the practical tasks. But if these tasks are peace talks then there can be a clearing of the slates on daily events. This is why we keep hearing leaders pushing talks, talks, talks!


by: Anonymous
January 12, 2013 5:13 PM
I agree with the viewpoints in the post by Jeremiah Williams from: twitter.com/MinJermiah.


by: JKF from: Ottawa, Canada
January 12, 2013 1:43 AM
To the other poster- Pres. Obama did not start this conflict, as a matter of fact for over 12 months, the USA was distancing itself, a very wise descision. The US involvement started with the request to NATO, by Turkey's gvmt for help. This request came after a bombardment, by Syrian forces, of a small Turkish village that resulted , if I recall corectly, in 5 casualties (2 dead/3 wounded). Following which Turkey took many other bombardments, without any casualties; then a Turkish reconasaince plane was shot down, by Syrian forces, over the Med in Turkish waters. Syria acknowledged and apologized for the incidents. Following which Erdogan asked for Patriot anti air missiles from NATO. I recall Pres Obamas was very reluctant to this, the Dutch and Germans were the first to agree. That started the US involvement, Turkey is a NATO member and NATO has an obligation to defend Turkey. The start of the conflict was a peaceful public demonstration, asking for reforms in Homs; Syrian gvmt replied with gunfire.. So no person should blame the US for this horrible situation. Israel is not involved in the conflict, has not had a military conflict with Syria for years. The main issue is to save the civilians, and humanitarian corridors need to be pushed in, and it should be done by Turkey and by the Gulf states, not the US or NATO. Turkey has one of the biggest armed forces in the World. The Gulf states have some of the best military equipment/training in the World; oil money can buy you the best...let us hope they have the necessary courage to help the civilians in Syria. I am sad to see that some Americans are getting some kind of self incrimination issue.


by: Jeremiah Williams from: twitter.com/MinJermiah
January 11, 2013 3:49 PM
I'm %100 in support of Israel. I love my country the United States. However this propaganda is ridiculous. The church should be smarter than this. What is happening in Syria is just wrong and we are not being told the truth by our media outlets both Christian and secular.

This is proxy war funded and led by the United States. America is supporting terrorists groups including Al Qaeda. Syria was no threat to the United States or her allies. Syria has not been purposely killing innocent civilians are our news outlets are reporting. These deaths are twofold. One is the results of terrorist murders and the other are terrorists being killed. To say that the Syrian government shouldn't be killing these groups is to say our government shouldn't kill anyone if it attacks her. If a United States group took up arms against her, she would surely bring the hammer of death. She would defend herself at all cost. The Syrian government is suppost to protect herself and citizens.

The United States has no business supporting Al Qaeda and other terrorists groups!!! We shouldn't have attacked Libya, which was the most stable and prosperous country outside South Africa. We should have not supporting and funded the overthrowing of Egypt, one of our main allies in the war on terror. In both Libya and Egypt you could be a Christian freely, not anymore. First thing happened in Libya after the murder of Kadafi, was the terrorist groups started killing Christians and blacks. The Christians are trying the flee Egypt by tthe droves.

They media is lying saying this groups are fighting for democratic government. Hog wash. Stop lying to the American people!!! The want and are instituting Sharia Law. No more rights for woman or Christians. The majority of the world no this. Most international news outlets questioning how americans are now supporting terrorists and why.

Our government is destabalizing the middle east bacause of gold and oil. As a man of God I have to call wrong wrong. It isn't about freedom. Stop lying!!! There are real countries where people are being oppressed and these countries where not any of those countries.

Stop the prooganda machine.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid