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Syrian imbroglio

Published Mar 21, 2017 05:42am


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THE reports emerging from Syria over the past couple of days are worrying, and the faint hope of a negotiated end to this brutal war is fading fast. On Monday, government forces pounded rebel-held parts of Damascus, a day after militants had launched a surprise attack on the Syrian capital. Moreover, the Israeli defence minister made a reckless announcement on Sunday promising to “destroy Syrian air defence systems” after reports had emerged that Israeli jets had struck targets inside Syria. The Syrian government had claimed that it had shot down the Israeli intruder. Last week, nearly 50 people were killed — most of them reportedly civilians — after American warplanes hit a mosque in Aleppo province; the US denied it had hit a mosque and claimed it had targeted Al Qaeda militants instead. All this makes for a grim build-up to the Syrian peace talks, sponsored by the UN, that are due soon in Geneva.

The key problem is that in Syria, there are far too many parties creating problems. The civil war, which has now completed its sixth year, was internationalised when the West, Turkey and the Gulf states saw an opportunity to topple Bashar al-Assad’s regime. On the other hand, Mr Assad’s allies — Iran, Russia and Hezbollah — were not ready to see the government in Damascus fall. In the middle of all this, sectarian extremists gained ground and now threaten the security of the region. Israel — long a force of instability in the Middle East — has also not helped matters with its arrogant rhetoric and irresponsible forays into Syria. Already, hundreds of thousands have been killed in the Syrian war, while millions have been displaced. A once functioning country has been turned into a hollow shell of its former self. It is hard to be optimistic about Syria’s future in such circumstances, but it must be said that regional states — Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia particularly — need to go the extra mile and make greater efforts to resolve the conflict to avoid further destruction and suffering.

Published in Dawn, March 21st, 2017


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Comments (5) Closed

invincible Mar 21, 2017 09:55am

Totally agree with this Editorial writer that Israel had no business attacking Syrian targets where defenseless civilians were brutally targeted. What's even more disturbing is the new found Israeli - Saudi nexus which reminds one of the old adage, "my enemy's enemy is my friend."

Imran Mar 21, 2017 12:34pm

Senseless Editorial

Ali Vazir Mar 21, 2017 01:16pm

Who has given the authority to any external power to demand removal of an elected head of state or govt, esp a dictator himself? On the other hand nobody has the authority to enforce a displaced head of state or govt, who has run away from his country due to a revolution. Unless we together raise our voice against injustices and coercion, we will not be successful in life.

Well Meaning Mar 21, 2017 01:48pm

its part of israeli plan to destroy any country which can threaten it .Egypt libya now syria .

Alba Mar 21, 2017 05:49pm

@Ali Vazir ... Care to be a little more specific and name names?