Annan’s peace plan keeps proving fragile and of little hope for Syria. Despite UN’s recent deployment of monitors to the country, violence hasn’t stopped. Today’s is the last of a series of attacks that have been taking place since the UN-backed ceasefire came into effect last April 12. According to the opposition backed Syrian Observatory for Human Rights more than 20 people, mainly security forces, have been killed in the north-western city of Idlib while the state TV sets the number at 8.
The UN has called both the government and the opposition parties to stop the escalation of violence over the last few weeks and to respect the cease-fire. It has also warned that it will need more monitors on the ground in order to oversee the truce. Although the UN plans to deploy 300 more unarmed monitors, this will not solve the problem. The UN will need more than unarmed monitors in order to bring peace to Syria, no matter how many they send. Although according to some activists the UN mission has managed to reduce the intensity of the attacks, Syria needs to find a long-term solution and not simply rely on the presence of UN ‘protectors’. However, how can peace be restored when none of the parties involved in the conflict are willing to make concessions and talk? Without a dialogue, the continuous accusations from both sides and such a divided and fractured opposition, unfortunately there’s little scope for change.
Perhaps instead of just sending monitors to oversee the cease-fire, it would be useful to send experts to facilitate communication between the parties involved in the conflict; to promote dialogue between them and empower politically the opposition parties so that they have the means to form a strong alternative and speak with one voice. It seems that Annan’s six- point plan is not really dealing with the core of the problem (s), but rather trying to impose a quick solution to the conflict. It is the people on the ground who know better than anyone else what they need for their country. They just need to be heard and helped to convey their ideas and achieve their goals.