News / Middle East

UN Special Envoy to Syria Resigns

FILE - U.N. mediator for Syria Lakdar Brahimi gestures during a press briefing at the United Nations headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, January 2014.
FILE - U.N. mediator for Syria Lakdar Brahimi gestures during a press briefing at the United Nations headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, January 2014.
Margaret Besheer
The United Nations and Arab League special envoy to Syria, Lakdar Brahimi, has resigned.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says he accepted Brahimi's resignation, effective May 31, after discussing it with Nabil ElAraby, head of the Arab League.

The former Algerian foreign minister has worked for nearly two years to find a diplomatic solution to end three years of war in Syria, and his resignation had been anticipated for some time.

Brahimi gave his final briefing to the U.N. Security Council after Ban announced the resignation.

“I have suggested seven issues that need to be considered, and that if they are acted upon they will lead to a serious process for peace," said Brahimi. "[The] Geneva Communique is still and will continue to be at the center of things, but there are quite a number of things that need to be done.”

No successor has been named to replace the elder statesman, who recently said that if elections take place in Syria on June 3, his job — to negotiate a political settlement and establish a transitional governing body — would be pointless.

Appointed envoy in August 2012, at which point the United Nations said an estimated 20,000 people had died in the conflict, Brahimi said he is “very sad” to leave Syria still mired in crisis, but that he believes it will be resolved.

In the two years he has worked to find a political solution, activists estimate the death toll has skyrocketed to 150,000 people.

The outgoing envoy welcomed reports that Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister has invited his Iranian counterpart to Riyadh for meetings.

Brahimi also noted that Iran has suggested a four-point plan for Syria that includes a cease-fire, national unity government; elections and a constitutional review that would limit the president’s powers. He said the proposal is “interesting” and could be considered.

Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin commended Brahimi for his efforts, saying he worked hard for a breakthrough, but it did not happen.

“But we believe that the show must go on, and that every effort must continue to be exerted in order to try to set the process of finding a political solution to the Syrian crisis in motion,” Churkin said.

Ban called Brahimi "one of the world's most brilliant diplomats" and said "he has faced almost impossible odds, with a Syrian nation, Middle Eastern region and wider international community that have been hopelessly divided in their approaches to ending the conflict."

Brahimi, 80, has served as a U.N. special advisor on several issues during the past two decades, including serving as the special representative in Afghanistan from October 2001 to December 2004. He replaced former U.N. secretary-general Kofi Annan, who held the envoy post for six months and then quit, blaming the Security Council impasse for blocking his peace efforts.

Several names have been floated as possible successors to Brahimi, among them former Tunisian Foreign Minister Kamel Morjane, former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and U.N. diplomat Michael Williams.

You May Like

US Firms Concerned About China's New Cyber Regulations

New rules would require technology companies doing business in financial sector to hand over their source code, adopt Chinese encryption algorithms More

WHO Focus on Ebola Shifts to Ending Outbreak

Focus to be less on building facilities and more on efforts to find infected people, manage their cases, engage with communities and ensure proper burials More

US Scientist Who Conceived of Groundbreaking Laser Technology Dies

Charles Townes, Nobel laureate, laser co-creator paved way for other scientific discoveries: CDs, eye surgery, metal cutters to name a few technologies that rely on lasers More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
May 14, 2014 12:51 AM
The Syria dilemma is long done deal. The West plus Obama's US lost their credibility. Syrian government continues to use chemical weapon relentlessly against its own civilians while other religious fanatics group joined the conflict and helped fuel the killing innocent further with the blessing of the west.


by: Davis K. Thanjan from: New York
May 13, 2014 10:27 PM
Koffi Anan was very truthful. He new the impossible task facing him as a UN Special Envoy in Syria. So he quit his job in a month. But Lakdar Brahimi enjoyed the same job for two years increasing the death toll from 20,000 to more than 150,000 and adding millions of Syrian refugees in Turkey, Jordan and other countries and adding millions as Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) within Syria. Who is the next UN Special Envoy for Syria to prolong the death, destruction and agony of Syrian people? Dumping all the responsibility for peace in Syria is the travesty of the politicians like US.President Obama and other head of states in Europe and Middle East. Peace in Syrian cannot be accomplished unless these countries and UN can challenge the Syrian dictator Assad militarily. Inaction is equivalent to support of the dictator and UN has the full responsiblity for the inaction and the ongoing carnage in Syria.


by: abel ogah from: OJU Nigeria
May 13, 2014 5:45 PM
Who is next to be appointed?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Super Bowl Ads Compete for Eyes on TV, Webi
X
January 29, 2015 9:58 AM
Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 1) is about more than just the NFL's American football championship and big parties to watch the game. Viewers also tune in for the world famous commercials that send Facebook and Twitter abuzz. Daniela Schrier reports on the social media rewards for America’s priciest advertising.
Video

Video Super Bowl Ads Compete for Eyes on TV, Web

Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 1) is about more than just the NFL's American football championship and big parties to watch the game. Viewers also tune in for the world famous commercials that send Facebook and Twitter abuzz. Daniela Schrier reports on the social media rewards for America’s priciest advertising.
Video

Video Theologians Cast Doubt on Morality of Drone Strikes

In 2006, stirred by photos of U.S. soldiers mistreating Iraqi prisoners, a group of American faith leaders and academics launched the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. It played an important role in getting Congress to investigate, and the president to ban, torture. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Freedom on Decline Worldwide, Report Says

The state of global freedom declined for the ninth consecutive year in 2014, according to global watchdog Freedom House's annual report released Wednesday. VOA's William Gallo has more.
Video

Video As Ground Shifts, Obama Reviews Middle East Strategy

The death of Saudi Arabia’s king, the collapse of a U.S.-friendly government in Yemen and a problematic relationship with Israel’s leadership are presenting a new set of complications for the Obama administration and its Middle East policy. Not only is the U.S. leader dealing with adversaries in Iran, the Islamic State and al-Qaida, but he is now juggling trouble with traditional allies, as White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video MRI Seems to Help Diagnose Prostate Cancer, Preliminary Study Shows

Just as with mammography used to detect breast cancer, there's a lot of controversy about tests used to diagnose prostate cancer. Fortunately, a new study shows doctors may now have a more reliable way to diagnose prostate cancer for high risk patients. More from VOA's Carol Pearson.
Video

Video Smartphones About to Make Leap, Carry Basic Senses

Long-distance communication contains mostly sounds and pictures - for now. But scientists in Britain say they are close to creating additions for our smartphones that will make it possible to send taste, smell and even a basic touch. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video NASA Monitors Earth’s Vital Signs From Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, is wrapping up its busiest 12-month period in more than a decade, with three missions launched in 2014 and two this month, one in early January and the fifth scheduled for January 29. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the instruments being lifted into orbit are focused on Earth’s vital life support systems and how they are responding to a warmer planet.
Video

Video Saved By a Mistake - an Auschwitz Survivor's Story

Dagmar Lieblova was 14 when she arrived at Auschwitz in December 1943, along with her entire Czech Jewish family. All of them were to die there, but she was able to leave after several months due to a bureaucratic mix-up which saved her life. Now 85, with three children and six grandchildren, she says she has a feeling of victory. This report by Ahmad Wadiei and Farin Assemi, of RFE/RL's Radio Farda is narrated by RFE’s Raymond Furlong.

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