French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian travels to Moscow today for talks with Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on the Syrian Civil War.
In recent weeks, Bashar al-Assad’s regime has intensified its bombardment of the last rebel enclave in the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta. On Saturday, the UN Security Council unanimously approved a 30-day humanitarian truce in the district, which has been besieged since 2013 and remains home to some 400,000.
In the weeks to come, observers will be keeping an eye on three things: to what extent the 30-day ceasefire is adhered to in Eastern Ghouta, if Turkish military involvement against the Kurds continues in northwest Syria and how the foreign powers involved in the conflict respond to recent developments.
Take note especially of the humanitarian outrage directed at the Assad regime for its actions against these last rebel forces. With the Islamic State in Syria almost destroyed, the rebels taking a final stand in Damascus and the Turks actively engaging the Kurds, Assad — while not defeating all his adversaries himself per se — appears to be nearing the point of being the last major domestic force in the war-torn country left standing.
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Nick is the Director of the Daily Brief and a contributing Senior Analyst to it. An attorney, his areas of expertise include international law, international and domestic criminal law, security affairs in Europe and the Middle East, and human rights.