6 feb

Ännu ett tecken på ändrad inställning från USA – washingtonpost.com – Involving Russia in Syria

In the case of Syria, a joint effort to secure chemical weapons would reassure Russia that it will have a role in future security and stability in Syria and the region. It would also reduce the danger that these weapons might fall into the hands of the jihadist groups, such as al-Nusra Front that’s linked to al-Qaeda.
• Sheik Mouaz al-Khatib, the leader of the umbrella coalition group of the Syrian opposition, repeated Friday night in Munich his willingness to meet with acceptable representative of the Assad regime, “to ease the suffering of the Syrian people.” He had initially made this proposal early last week and was blasted for it by other, more hawkish members of the opposition. His willingness to repeat it, during a panel discussion I moderated here Friday night, was a positive sign. His statement was welcomed by Lakhdar Brahimi, the U.N. special representative for Syria, who was also on the panel.
More encouraging was Lavrov’s response Saturday, after he met with Khatib privately. He called the Syrian opposition leader’s willingness to consider discussions with regime representatives “an important step” and said that Russia was prepared to keep working with the opposition to facilitate talks. The opposition must now decide who in the Assad regime has sufficiently “clean hands” to be a negotiating partner. This process, of separating “reconcilable” and “irreconcilable” elements of the regime is an essential step in any negotiated political transition.
Bluntly put, there’s no good way out of the Syrian crisis without Russian help. I wrote months ago that the unlikely mission of U.S. diplomacy should be to try to win a Nobel Peace Prize for Russian President Vladimir Putin, if he can broker an end to the Syrian conflict. That’s a long shot, to be sure. But it was good to hear two new ideas for how Russia could play a positive role in Syria, rather than encouraging continued devastation.

english.ruvr.ru – No visible prospects for resolving situation in Syria – Gatilov

There are currently no visible prospects for resolving the situation in Syria. This was announced on Tuesday by Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov.
Citing one of the reasons for this, Gatilov said that ”our Western partners do not conduct sufficient work with the opposition.”
The diplomat reminded of Russia’s stance that all issues should be resolved by the Syrians themselves, without imposing any model from the outside, while the international community should make every effort to persuade the two sides to sit down to the negotiating table.

Video – Syria News 6.2.2013
* Citizens Martyred in Two Car Bomb Blasts in Palmyra
* Military Operations in Damascus Countryside Target Terrorists
* Media Source: Media Reports on Situation in Damascus Baseless
* Ahmadinejad Renews Rejection of Foreign Interference in Syria
* Moscow: Syria’s Future Determined by Syrians
* Chinese FM Stresses Commitment to Objective, Fair Stand on Syria

syria-updates.blogspot.se – Two detonations rock Damascus – Syrian Army kills gunmen in the countryside

Two car bombs have blasted near a school in al-Zahira and near a checkpoint for the Public Committees in al-Yarmouk Camp, claiming victims and material damages.
Our correspondent affirmed that the explosion near Rabee al-Ansari school in Zahira did not cause any victims, where the victims were recorded in the detonation of al-Yarmouk Camp.

Breaking News Update: Feb. 6 ,2013

Syria’s top official visits China for talks with Chinese leaders

Obama administration playing with fire over Syria policy: James Jatrasvideo

Press TV: And how much do you evaluate the UN’s role in preventing the escalation of this crisis?
Jatras: I do not think the UN can accomplish anything unless there is an agreement among the permanent members of the Security Council and again this is where the Western demand that Bashar al-Assad must go before there can be any kind of negotiation and also most of the Syrian oppositions demand that he must go before there can be a negotiation, I think it is very misplaced.
I think that with that demand to be withdrawn, it would be possible for both side with their outside supporters to sponsor some sort of negotiation and a peaceful solution. But I think that the Western powers are not willing to entertain that yet.

stratfor.com – The Consequences of Intervening in Syria

This means that the current level of external intervention in Syria is similar to the level exercised against the Soviet Union and its communist proxies following the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan. The external supporters are providing not only training, intelligence and assistance, but also weapons — exogenous weapons that make the external provision of weapons obvious to the world. It is also interesting that in Syria, like Afghanistan, two of the major external supporters are Washington and Riyadh — though in Syria they are joined by regional powers such as Turkey, Jordan, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, rather than Pakistan.

Supporting jihadists in Syria also gives the Saudis an opportunity to ship their own radicals to Syria, where they can fight and possibly die. With a large number of unemployed, underemployed and radicalized young men, the jihad in Syria provides a pressure valve similar to the past struggles in Iraq, Chechnya, Bosnia and Afghanistan. The Saudis are not only trying to winnow down their own troubled youth; we have received reports from a credible source that the Saudis are also facilitating the travel of Yemeni men to training camps in Turkey, where they are trained and equipped before being sent to Syria to fight. The reports also indicate that the young men are traveling for free and receiving a stipend for their service. These young radicals from Saudi Arabia and Yemen will even further strengthen the jihadist groups in Syria by providing them with fresh troops.
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