Syria: The Crisis and Its Implications

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As of March , the war has affected heritage sites, severely damaged , and completely destroyed It is known that the Old City of Aleppo was heavily damaged during battles being fought within the district, while Palmyra and Krak des Chevaliers suffered minor damage. Illegal digging is considered a grave danger, and hundreds of Syrian antiquities, including some from Palmyra, appeared in Lebanon.

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Three archeological museums are known to have been looted; in Raqqa some artifacts seem to have been destroyed by foreign Islamists due to religious objections. In and , following the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant , several sites in Syria were destroyed by the group as part of a deliberate destruction of cultural heritage sites. In Palmyra, the group destroyed many ancient statues, the Temples of Baalshamin and Bel , many tombs including the Tower of Elahbel , and part of the Monumental Arch. According to a September Syrian Network for Human Rights reports more than Christian churches has been destroyed or damaged in Syria since The war has inspired its own particular artwork, done by Syrians.

A late summer exhibition in London at the P21 Gallery showed some of this work, which had to be smuggled out of Syria. Turkey has accepted 1,, Syrian refugees, half of whom are spread around cities and a dozen camps placed under the direct authority of the Turkish Government. Satellite images confirmed that the first Syrian camps appeared in Turkey in July , shortly after the towns of Deraa, Homs, and Hama were besieged. The Syrian refugee crisis has caused the "Jordan is Palestine" threat to be diminished due to the onslaught of new refugees in Jordan.

The violence in Syria caused millions to flee their homes. As of March , Al-Jazeera estimate On 2 January , the United Nations stated that 60, had been killed since the civil war began, with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay saying "The number of casualties is much higher than we expected, and is truly shocking. Navi Pillay , UN high commissioner for human rights, stated that: "This is most likely a minimum casualty figure. One problem has been determining the number of "armed combatants" who have died, due to some sources counting rebel fighters who were not government defectors as civilians.

Additionally, over detainees and political prisoners are known to have died under torture. On 20 August , a new U. Fighting makes it impossible to undertake the normal vaccination programs. The displaced refugees may also pose a disease risk to countries to which they have fled. Humanitarian aid reaches the camp only sporadically, sometimes taking three months between shipments.


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Formerly rare infectious diseases have spread in rebel-held areas brought on by poor sanitation and deteriorating living conditions. The diseases have primarily affected children. These include measles , typhoid , hepatitis , dysentery , tuberculosis , diphtheria , whooping cough and the disfiguring skin disease leishmaniasis. Of particular concern is the contagious and crippling Poliomyelitis. As of late doctors and international public health agencies have reported more than 90 cases.


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  • Critics of the government complain that, even before the uprising, it contributed to the spread of disease by purposefully restricting access to vaccination , sanitation and access to hygienic water in "areas considered politically unsympathetic". The difficulty of delivering humanitarian aid to people is indicated by the statistics for January of the estimated , people during that month who were besieged by government or opposition forces, were reached with food.

    The United States has provided food aid, medical supplies, emergency and basic health care, shelter materials, clean water, hygiene education and supplies, and other relief supplies. Other countries in the region have also contributed various levels of aid. Iran has been exporting between and tonnes of flour daily to Syria. Israel also delivered heating fuel , diesel fuel , seven electric generators , water pipes, educational materials, flour for bakeries, baby food , diapers , shoes and clothing.

    Syrian refugees in Lebanon make up one quarter of Lebanon's population , mostly consisting of women and children. Another aspect of the post war years will be how to repatriate the millions of refugees. The Syrian government has put forward a law commonly known as " law 10 ", which could strip refugees of property, such as damaged real estate.

    There are also fears among some refugees that if they return to claim this property they will face negative consequences, such as forced conscription or prison. The Syrian government has been criticized for using this law to reward those who have supported the government. However, the government denies this and has expressed that it wants the return of refugees from Lebanon.

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    Some people's pensions have also been cancelled. During the course of the war, there have been several international peace initiatives, undertaken by the Arab League, the United Nations, and other actors. On 3 February , the UN Syria peace mediator suspended the talks. The Syrian government insisted that discussion of Bashar-al-Assad's presidency "is a red line", however Syria's President Bashar al-Assad said he hoped peace talks in Geneva would lead to concrete results, and stressed the need for a political process in Syria.

    A new round of talks between the Syrian government and some groups of Syrian rebels concluded on 24 January 24, in Astana , Kazakhstan, with Russia, Iran and Turkey supporting the ceasefire agreement brokered in late December On September 18 , Russia accused the United States and Syrian rebels of obstructing the evacuation process of a refugee camp in southern Syria. While the war still ongoing, Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad claimed that Syria would be able to rebuild the war-torn country on its own. Assad claims to be able to loan this money from friendly countries, Syrian diaspora and the state treasury.

    It was reported that the biggest issue facing the rebuilding process is the lack of building material and a need to make sure the resources that do exist are managed efficiently.

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    The rebuilding effort have so far remained at a limited capacity and has often been focused on certain areas of a city, thus ignoring other areas inhabited by disadvantaged people. According to a Syrian war monitor, over Churches have been damaged or demolished by all sides in Syrian war since According to various human rights organizations and United Nations, human rights violations have been committed by both the government and the rebels, with the "vast majority of the abuses having been committed by the Syrian government".

    According to three international lawyers, [] Syrian government officials could face war crimes charges in the light of a huge cache of evidence smuggled out of the country showing the "systematic killing" of about 11, detainees. Most of the victims were young men and many corpses were emaciated, bloodstained and bore signs of torture. Some had no eyes; others showed signs of strangulation or electrocution. UN reported also that " siege warfare is employed in a context of egregious human rights and international humanitarian law violations.

    The warring parties do not fear being held accountable for their acts. The report pointed to four places besieged by the government forces: Muadamiyah, Daraya, Yarmouk camp and Old City of Homs, as well as two areas under siege of rebel groups: Aleppo and Hama. ISIS forces have been accused by the UN of using public executions, amputations, and lashings in a campaign to instill fear. Enforced disappearances and arbitrary detentions have also been a feature since the Syrian uprising began. In February , Amnesty International published a report which accused the Syrian government of murdering an estimated 13, persons, mostly civilians, at the Saydnaya military prison.

    They said the killings began in and were still ongoing. Amnesty International described this as a "policy of deliberate extermination" and also stated that "These practices, which amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity, are authorised at the highest levels of the Syrian government.

    According to the U. By July , the human rights group Women Under Siege had documented over cases of rape and sexual assault during the conflict, with many of these crimes believed to have been perpetrated by the Shabiha and other pro-government militias. On September 11, , the UN investigators said that air strikes conducted by the US-led coalition in Syria have killed or wounded several civilians, denoting that necessary precautions were not taken leading to potential war crimes.

    As the violence intensifies in north-west Syria, thousands of women and children are reportedly kept under "inhumane conditions" in a remote camp, said UN-appointed investigators. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Ongoing multi-sided armed conflict in Syria. This article may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia's quality standards. The specific problem is: Infobox is too wide, uses columns inside. Relevant discussion may be found on the talk page. Please help improve this article if you can. July Learn how and when to remove this template message.

    Syria with spillovers in neighboring countries. Syrian Arab Republic. Interim Government Syrian opposition. Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant [d] —present.

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    Rojava Syrian Democratic Council —present. Killed in action:. Syrian Civil War. Civil uprising in Syria March—August Start of insurgency Sept. Homs —14 Homs offensive 1st Idlib Gov.

    Azaz 2nd Rastan 1st al-Qusayr 2nd Idlib Gov. UN ceasefire ; escalation May — Dec. Rise of the Islamists January — Sept. Russian intervention Sept. Aleppo escalation and Euphrates Shield March—December Rebels in retreat and Operation Olive Branch Nov. Idlib demilitarization 5th Idlib inter-rebel conflict Operation Roundup Sep. Renewed fighting April —Present.

    Syrian War spillover and international incidents. Foreign involvement in the Syrian Civil War. Since protests. Regional organisations. Algeria pro-Iraq pro-Syria. Splinter groups. Related topics. Arab nationalism Arab socialism Nasserism Pan-Arabism. Politics portal Socialism portal. Main article: Modern history of Syria. See also: Al-Assad family and Bashar al-Assad. Main article: Demographics of Syria. Main article: Timeline of the Syrian Civil War.

    Main article: Civil uprising phase of the Syrian Civil War. Main article: Early insurgency phase of the Syrian Civil War. Main article: Kofi Annan peace plan for Syria. Main article: —13 escalation of the Syrian Civil War. Main article: Inter-rebel conflict during the Syrian Civil War.


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    • Main articles: Khan Shaykhun chemical attack , Shayrat missile strike , and Hama offensive. Main article: Belligerents of the Syrian Civil War. Countries that support the Syrian government. Countries that support the Syrian rebels. Countries that are divided in their support. Main article: Spillover of the Syrian Civil War. See also: Equipment of the Syrian Army and List of military equipment used by Syrian opposition forces. Main article: Destruction of Syria's chemical weapons. See also: Syria and weapons of mass destruction and Syria chemical weapons program.

      Main article: Deir ez-Zor missile strike. Main article: Media coverage of the Syrian Civil War. Main article: International reactions to the Syrian Civil War. See also: Vetoed UN resolutions on Syria. Main article: Sectarianism and minorities in the Syrian Civil War. Main article: Refugees of the Syrian Civil War. Main article: Internally displaced persons in Syria. Main article: Casualties of the Syrian Civil War. Main article: Humanitarian aid during the Syrian Civil War. Main article: Return of refugees of the Syrian Civil War.

      Main article: Prosecution of Syrian civil war criminals. Asia portal War portal. Charter Foreign Affairs. It's not as far-fetched as it sounds". The Washington Post. The Guardian. Returning from a summit in the Saudi capital last week, opposition leaders say they were told directly by the foreign minister, Adel al-Jubeir, that Riyadh was disengaging.

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      Foreign Policy. Retrieved 18 February Asia Times. Asharq Al-Awsat. Retrieved 23 March Retrieved 6 June Retrieved 15 December The Soufan Group. Retrieved 17 September Retrieved 19 February Retrieved 20 March Results of battles and resistance of YPG throughout "On the eve of Nowruz festivals…Afrin witnesses arrests against its residents by the factions of "Olive Branch" on charge of celebrating and setting fire in the festival's anniversary". F crashes in Jordan". BBC News. ABC News. Syrian Observatory of Human Rights.

      Violations Documenting Center. Retrieved 8 March Special Operations forces begin new role alongside Turkish troops in Syria". Military Times. Retrieved 4 January Archived from the original on 30 April Retrieved 29 April Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 30 July Archived from the original on 22 June Retrieved 21 June Archived from the original on 21 June Retrieved 23 May Archived from the original on 21 July Retrieved 15 March Archived from the original on 21 September Retrieved 7 November Archived from the original on 1 April Retrieved 18 March Archived from the original on 5 June Retrieved 5 June Archived from the original on 17 May Retrieved 18 May Contemporary Security Policy.

      Archived from the original on 2 February Retrieved 20 January The Seattle Times. Archived from the original on 29 April Archived from the original on 7 June Archived from the original on 23 September Retrieved 8 August David Goodman 1 April Archived from the original on 13 May Retrieved 19 December Archived from the original on 13 April Department of State.

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      A hasty US withdrawal from Syria and its implications on the war against ISIS

      By , Syria was facing steep rises in the prices of commodities and a clear deterioration in the national standard of living. Archived from the original on 25 April Retrieved 1 May Archived from the original on 30 August Archived from the original on 14 April Weather, Climate, and Society. Archived from the original on 27 August Retrieved 14 April Archived from the original on 30 July Archived from the original on 2 January Amnesty International.

      Archived from the original on 28 February Retrieved 1 February Archived from the original on 13 August Retrieved 13 December Retrieved 23 February Retrieved 15 September New York Times. Archived from the original on 10 May Der Spiegel. Archived from the original on 5 April Retrieved 4 April Archived from the original on 26 April Archived from the original on 24 February The Telegraph.

      Archived from the original on 5 March Retrieved 30 June Archived from the original on 22 October Retrieved 21 October Financial Times. Archived from the original on 14 December Retrieved 10 December The Times of Israel. Sanctions often serve as an expression of moral outrage for Western policymakers.

      And certainly, moral outrage is justified.

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      The Syrian regime has committed enormous crimes against its own people. But outrage is not a strategy and Western sanctions as currently envisioned reveal a scorched earth policy that indiscriminately and arbitrarily punishes ordinary Syrians and threaten legitimate businesses. And this is only getting worse. Within 48 hours of its issue, insurance companies cut their ties with vessels going to Syria, ships stopped sending their cargo, and the gas all but dried up. In an effort to deal with the crisis, the Syrian government asked prominent businessmen to buy vessels and transport gas from Iran and Russia, uninsured, which is highly risky and expensive.

      The cost of shipping has now soared due to the risk. Inside the country today, ordinary Syrians are queueing for hours to buy a canister of gas to heat and cook with. Electricity cuts are plaguing the country. There is growing and very public discontent among the population. Sanctions have left a larger and, in some cases, fatal impact beyond their intended goals: much has been reported about critical medical equipment and pharmaceuticals still being prevented from reaching Syria, including life-saving cancer medication and hospital equipment , because of the terms stipulated in the sanctions.

      After eight years of conflict it is clear that sanctions have made absolutely no impact on shifting government positions. Meanwhile, sanctioned figures remain the dominant business actors in Syria today and, where it closes off opportunities for some, other government-affiliated figures quickly rise up in their place. Some actors are now profiting as a direct result of the sanctions-based economy, while average Syrians are forced to find alternative — and increasingly expensive — ways to bring in basic materials in order to survive.

      A major flaw in the recent EU sanctions and the proposed US sanctions is that they fail to distinguish between the regime, the government, and non-official institutions. They do not define what the regime is, and what behaviour and business practices they accept as legitimate. Essentially these targeted sanctions criminalise the Syrian government as a whole, and consequently those who do any work in government-held territories.

      The most recent instance saw several wealthy Syrian businessmen, including prominent Samer Foz, named in the recent EU sanctions. Foz rose to prominence when he became one of the very few businessmen to stay in Syria in following massive flight of the Syrian business community. In theory, Law 10 is based on an international practice that has been widely used across continents for decades.

      This provides a model through which countries affected by war and destruction can rebuild, using minimal state investment and depend instead on the private sector to invest. Meanwhile, the Marotta City project is a luxury real estate development project based on the notion of buying plots of land in return for shares in the project. While it has bought out those who lived there, it is not an anti-opposition political project, rather a project that should be defined as neoliberal, serving upper-class investors at the expense of the lower classes.

      What the Syrian government did was take the international practice and develop it into very poorly constructed legislation; it saw the Marotta City project as a viable redevelopment project that could be applied across the country in order to extract money from private investors and limit its own funding in reconstruction. What subsequently came out was a bill that discriminates against the poor and sees all land seized for small entitlements that will not be enough to secure their access to the newly developed residential areas.

      For the government, Foz and others are useful as their businesses and investments inside the country contribute towards keeping the economy running. But at the same time, there is no friendship or loyalty to the top businessmen. Like the population as a whole — rich or poor — they are viewed as a resource to plunder.