Rebels from the Syrian National Coalition (SNC) today met with backers in London, the latest in a long line of meetings that have mostly focused on promising funding to the opposition factions, but this time appears aimed at convincing someone of at least a little credibility to attend the Geneva 2 peace conference.
That’s looking increasingly unlikely, as several factions in the SNC have ruled out involvement, and one of the bigger factions has even threatened to withdraw its backing if anyone else attends. So far no rebel faction has agreed to attend.
That’s a big problem with the talks tentatively set for November 23, though US and Russian officials have insisted the date isn’t finalized, and Syrian President Bashar Assad echoed those comments today, saying he doesn’t hold out much hope for the talks.
Assad’s comments were immediately spun as harming the peace process, but seem entirely accurate, as even if the US does manage to get a rebel faction or two on board, al-Qaeda and others clearly won’t be, and thus anyone who does attend won’t credibly be able to offer to end the fighting.
The US and Russia have admitted as much repeatedly, and the Obama Administration seems more focused on arguing that Iran shouldn’t be involved than in getting people involved who might be able to stop the fighting.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- US Tones Down Rhetoric, Actions Ahead of North Korea Summit - April 24th, 2018
- Trump Threatens Iran as Deadline to Withdraw From Nuclear Deal Looms - April 24th, 2018
- Trump Again Backtracks on Syria Pullout, Vows 'Strong and Lasting Footprint' - April 24th, 2018
- West Seeks to Bypass Russian Veto on UN Moves Against Syria - April 24th, 2018
- House Lawmakers Offer Alternative War Authorization Proposal - April 24th, 2018