The case of Syria shows that Europe maintains a limited ability to shape its Southern neighbourhood. For the time being it remains a fairly insignificant political actor in the unfolding Syrian crisis.
Syria / Iraq / Lebanon
Kofi Annan has created a diplomatic framework for dealing with the Syrian crisis. However, the security situation has changed and Annan must move with deliberate caution to make the 'Syrian-led political process' a success.
No one wants to deal with dictators. But one year after the Syrian uprising began, the harsh truth is that Bashar al-Assad maintains the upper hand and the opposition – with its international backers – may have little choice but to cut a deal with him if they want to ease the Syrian people’s suffering.
An end to the bloodshed may necessitate talks with the regime
Are the days of the Syrian president numbered? Despite popular opposition and growing international isolation, Assad's eventual demise is by no means assured.
On Sunday, the Arab League agreed to continue its controversial observer mission in Syria. In this piece, originally published by Foreign Policy two days before the League meeting, Richard Gowan makes the case for keeping the mission going.
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