Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s efforts to halt the Syrian Civil War and broker some sort of negotiated settlement continues, and while he says he is “optimistic” it also seems he faces an uphill battle to actually make the talks happen.
There’s been strong resistance from both sides on any sort of ceasefire leading into talks, with the regime insisting that it could not stand down in the face of “terrorist” rebels, while rebel factions insist that a foreign military intervention is the “only” way, and are mocking Annan’s plan as unreasonable.
Annan’s effort to secure the talks is going to take a brief back seat, however, as he rushes to Qatar to try to stop a foreign invasion. Qatar’s PM has called for an Arab League invasion of Syria to remove Assad.
Annan has been pushing for negotiations since his appointment as the UN special envoy to Syria, but has spent much of his time trying to convince regional powers that attacking Syria militarily is only going to make matters worse.