Syria: A Tactical—Not Strategic—Ceasefire

Members Only Subscribe to read the full article

The agreement between Turkey and Russia stipulates a halt to the fighting throughout Syrian territory from midnight on December 29, with the exception of areas with a Fatah al-Sham (formerly the al-Nusra Front) or Islamic State presence. In addition, the agreement provides for President Bashar al-Assad to remain in power until the end of his presidential term in June 2021. The other actors in the conflict (USA and Arab Gulf countries) and the entire Syrian opposition are invited to join the negotiations to be held in Astana, Kazakhstan planned for next month.

The UN, the United States, and even the opposition umbrella Syrian National Coalition welcomed the agreement. But make no mistake; the inclusion of Bashar el Assad’s eventual departure is only a simple way of attracting the Syrian opposition to the negotiating table while allowing the Western and Gulf countries to save face by adhering to this peace process. What guarantees can Russia give on Bashar el Assad’s departure in 2021?

The Cipher Brief has become the most popular outlet for former intelligence officers; no media outlet is even a close second to The Cipher Brief in terms of the number of articles published by formers.” —Sept. 2018, Studies in Intelligence, Vol. 62

Access all of The Cipher Brief‘s national security-focused expert insight by becoming a Cipher Brief Subscriber+Member.

Continue Reading

Get access to all our briefs

Sign up Today

Categorized as:InternationalTagged with:

Related Articles