TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

U.N., Arab League envoy warns of 'full collapse' of Syria

About The Tribune-Review
The Tribune-Review can be reached via e-mail or at 412-321-6460.
Contact Us | Video | Photo Reprints

Daily Photo Galleries


By The Associated Press

Published: Sunday, Dec. 30, 2012, 8:04 p.m.

The international envoy seeking to end Syria's civil war warned on Sunday that the failure of the government and the rebels to pursue a political solution could lead to the “full collapse of the Syrian state” and threaten the world's security.

Lakhdar Brahimi, who represents the United Nations and the Arab League, said that as many as 100,000 people could be killed in the next year as Syria moves toward “Somalization” and rule by warlords.

Brahimi has reported little progress in his mission to push a peace plan for Syria first presented in June at an international conference in Geneva.

The proposal calls for an open-ended cease-fire and the formation of a transitional government to run the nation until elections can be held and a new constitution drafted. So far, neither the regime of President Bashar Assad nor the scores of rebel groups fighting his forces across the country have shown any interest in negotiations.

The rebels' political leadership has called Assad's departure a prerequisite for any political solution, and it is unlikely that the opposition's National Coalition could even stop rebels on the ground from continuing to fight.

Likewise, it is doubtful that top members of Assad's regime will voluntarily give up power.

The Syrian government has remained officially mum on Brahimi's plan, which he has pushed in the past week in meetings with Assad in Damascus, with top Russian officials in Moscow and on Sunday with the head of the Arab League in Cairo.

Speaking alongside Nabil Elaraby, he estimated that 100,000 people could be killed if the 21-month conflict continues for another year.

“Peace and security in the world will be threatened directly from Syria if there is no solution within the next few months,” he said. “The alternatives are a political solution or the full collapse of the Syrian state.”

Since meeting Assad early last week, Brahimi has given no indication how his plan was received. When asked if there is any willingness among the opposition to enter a political process, Brahimi said, “No, there isn't.”

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read World

  1. Mexico clears way for foreign investors in shale oil drilling
  2. U.S. increases surveillance of N. Korea amidst rumors
  3. Afghan officials say detainment of Taliban commander thwarts peace process
  4. First lady’s absence from trip unsettles Japan
  5. On Easter, Syria’s President Assad visits Christian town recaptured from rebels
  6. Russia shakes fist at Ukraine; visiting Biden warns against intervention
  7. Extension for sputtering Mideast talks possible
  8. Toll rises in South Korean ferry tragedy; more of crew held
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.