Dear Deeply Readers,

Welcome to the archives of Syria Deeply. While we paused regular publication of the site on May 15, 2018, and transitioned some of our coverage to Peacebuilding Deeply, we are happy to serve as an ongoing public resource on the Syrian conflict. We hope you’ll enjoy the reporting and analysis that was produced by our dedicated community of editors contributors.

We continue to produce events and special projects while we explore where the on-site journalism goes next. If you’d like to reach us with feedback or ideas for collaboration you can do so at partners@newsdeeply.com.

Week in Review: Date for Peace Talks, Eyes on the Opposition

The long-awaited peace talks on Syria, known as Geneva II, now have a date: November 23, according to the head of the Arab League.

Written by Lara Setrakian Published on Read time Approx. 1 minutes

The U.S., the U.N., and Russia won’t yet confirm it – they’re still working out complicated details like who will attend, which voices can credibly represent the disjointed set of players fighting against the Assad regime.

Much rests on the Syrian opposition – how capable and cooperative they’ll be in the lead up to talks. The Syrian National Coalition, a political umbrella group, has operated in exile and lacks for legitimacy on the ground. The International Crisis Group published a powerful diagnostic of the opposition this week, detailing its weak spots and examining what it would take to shape a lasting peace at the negotiating table.

“Any viable resolution of the war will require emergence of a credibly representative opposition,” the Crisis Group wrote. “[The Coalition] will need to dramatically bolster its presence on the ground, opposition backers will have to streamline their assistance, and all must develop a strategy to deal with the growing jihadi phenomenon.”

If there’s one untapped hope for Syria it’s the rise of the country’s civil society, scores of Syrians banding together to push for peace, eke out a livelihood, and speak out against Al Qaeda. Their challenge is to be heard, amid all the noise of armed extremists and those fighting for political power.

While they wait for any sign of impending stability, the fighting continues to accelerate. This week, it was flashpoint Deir Ezzor, as fierce clashes raged in the wake of a rebel sniper hit that killed one of Assad’s top generals. It’s a reminder that while Assad has reclaimed a lead in the balance of power, both sides are suffering a loss in the brutal war of attrition.

Suggest your story or issue.

Send

Share Your Story.

Have a story idea? Interested in adding your voice to our growing community?

Learn more