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Syrian Opposition Fears US ‘Indifference’ in Peace Efforts

Syrian Opposition Fears US ‘Indifference’ in Peace Efforts

Sunday, 17 December, 2017 - 06:45
The Geneva Syrian peace talks. (Reuters)

The Syrian opposition fears that the US administration may become “indifferent” to the Syrian file, given its preoccupation with other internal and foreign files linked mainly to North Korea.

The fears of the opposition increased after a concrete weakening in US support, which was particularly witnessed following the failure of the eighth round of the Geneva Syrian peace talks and the increasing talks about other options that might soon kick off to find a political solution to the crisis, mainly through the Sochi path supported by Russia.

Opposition sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that due to its preoccupation, Washington automatically handed over to Moscow most Syrian files. Among them are issued related to a political solution in the country in exchange for Washington’s complete silence regarding the Sochi meeting and in return for its poor representation at the Geneva 8 talks.

Opposition sources close to the US position said that concerning the division of Syrian areas, Washington is currently satisfied with getting two strategic areas in the north, northeast and south of Syria, where its base in Tanf is located.

“In the northeast, Washington is protecting its presence in Syria and Iraq, and therefore is enhancing its direct influence there, in addition to blocking any Iranian expansion to the Mediterranean Sea,” the sources told Asharq Al-Awsat.

They added that in Tanf, the US is training its allies to prevent the positioning of any Iranian-backed forces in the area, and therefore protect the stability of the sensitive region, which is located near the northern Israeli borders.

On the battlefield, Syrian regime forces escalated on Saturday their military operations in the southwest Damascus countryside, adjacent to the Lebanese borders.

The forces are trying to seize the remaining towns, mainly the strategic town of Beit Jinn, close to these borders, which are still controlled by opposition factions.

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