Peace Envoy Says Assad Could Contribute to 'New' Syria


U.N.-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, who arrived in Damascus Monday, believes President Bashar Assad could contribute to the transition to a "new" Syria, but not as the country's leader.

Brahimi, who was in Syria on the latest leg of a regional tour to rally support for peace talks, spoke about Assad in an interview in Paris with the Jeune Afrique website published Monday.

"Many of those around (Assad) believe his candidacy (for a new presidential term in 2014) is a fact. He considers this an absolute right... He thinks above all of completing his mandate," the veteran Algerian diplomat said.

However, "what history teaches us is that after a crisis like this there is no going back. President Assad could therefore usefully contribute to the transition from the Syria of before, that of his father (the late president Hafez Assad) and himself, to what I call the new Republic of Syria."

Brahimi said the U.S.-Russian accord to dismantle Syria's chemical arsenal had transformed Assad from a "pariah" into a "partner" and convinced his supporters even more of his ability to prevail.

Brahimi also faces an uphill battle in convincing the fractured opposition to attend the Geneva talks, after 19 Islamist rebel groups warned that anyone taking part in the talks would be considered a traitor.

"This conference is the beginning of a process. We hope that the opposition will manage to agree on a credible and representative delegation," Brahimi said.

"We should not delude ourselves: the entire world will not be present. But as the process continues, it should include as much of the world as possible."

Brahimi, a veteran international troubleshooter, said he feared that if a settlement could not be reached Syria may become a failed state like Somalia, which has not had a functioning government for two decades.

"The real threat in Syria is not the partition of the country. The real danger is a sort of "Somalization," but even more deep and lasting than what we have seen in Somalia."

Comments 14
Thumb bronco 28 October 2013, 20:17

the best contribution Assad can ever provide is to pack his bags and leave

Missing anonymetexasusa 28 October 2013, 20:34

Of course he can play a role in the "New" Syria.
I would say he can play a very crucial role.
Abdicating & going into exile is the best contribution to the "New" Syria that no one can outmatch.

Missing anonymetexasusa 28 October 2013, 20:44

Well maybe I was hasty.
There is a way to outmatch Abdication & Exile..
He can throw himself off the roof of his palace.
He can stab himself in the heart with a sword.
He can shoot himself in the head.
Or he can swallow a cyanide pill.
I know it's a tall order for him to do, but hey it's out there for him to consider.

Missing gabby14 28 October 2013, 21:08

Hey Southern......will the "Syrian People" get to choose from a list or just pick from ASSad only??? ASSad says the same BS....let the Syrian people decide.....but no other candidates that are alive can run.

Missing anonymetexasusa 28 October 2013, 21:28

And if the Syrian people wanted him to stay we wouldn't have had a 30 months long uprising against him, and still ongoing.

Missing anonymetexasusa 28 October 2013, 22:09

But of course insideman it is not the Syrian people fighting him.
They are all foreign fighters, there are no Syrian fighters fighting against Assad.
There is not a single Syrian person providing food & shelter to the rebels.
There is not a single Syrian person providing supplies & intelligence to the rebels.
There is not a single Syrian doctor or nurse caring for the rebels.
There is not a single Syrian expat who left his country of residence to go fight Assad in Syria.
Right Insideman.
Now go take another deep smoke of whatever you have in your waterpipe & describe me what other hallucinations you will see.

Missing anonymetexasusa 28 October 2013, 22:53

Who said they admit that there were peaceful demonstrations.
For them they have 2 scenarios they go by
A- it was an armed struggle from day 1 with armed foreign hoardes infiltrating & attacking Syrian troops from day 1.
B-Peaceful Demonstration seen & filmed are all fake, whereby regime officials claim that Al-Jazeera has staged demonstrations & built several replica sets of Syrian towns in Jordan or Morocco, brought thousands of actors & extras to stage demonstrations and portray them as being in Syria.
Ask any Syrian supporter and you will see how they believe in either one of above stories.

Missing anonymetexasusa 28 October 2013, 22:34

I am quoting you insideman from 55 min ago above:"but it is not the Syrian ppl fighting him"
Enough said. You can't deny what you claimed once you have lost your argument.
PS: point taken on the insults.

Missing anonymetexasusa 28 October 2013, 23:18

I m sorry ex-progma
Some of them are beyond repair, even if they undergo brain surgery. See the constant brainwash drilling campaigns, in party schools, on party TV, from party banners on streets, all have irreversiy affected their mental development since childhood.
If they were adults when subjected to such a propaganda barrages then yes they could be salvaged. But since they were subjected to it since the very sensitive childhood years that irrevocably damaged their entire brain development - then no - no way to help.
They knew what they were doing when they created their own schools.

Missing anonymetexasusa 28 October 2013, 23:32

So now that your argument has been ridiculed, you are flipping your story from "but it's not the Syrian ppl fighting him - it's all foreign jihadist" to another story whereby it started with some of the population legitimate demands - but it's no longer so. And it was never a revolution.
Can't you see how you contradict yourself in your own sentence. If someone read your sentence to you, would you believe any word he is saying or would you tell him you are not making any sense.

Missing VINCENT 29 October 2013, 01:19

I think the irony of all this is that the average Lebanese people no matter what religion, secs, etc. just want to get along, live and prosper without interference from outsiders, and they are not the ones who are being benefited from all this

Missing gabby14 29 October 2013, 03:38

The Shia jihadis and mercenary killers from Iran, Iraq, and the Hezz do not count according to the pro butcher boy camp.

Thumb primesuspect 29 October 2013, 05:55

they r truly sick people

Missing helicopter 29 October 2013, 03:41

Why then do we have 1 Million Syrian refugees in Lebanon alone? If they were not against Assad don/t you think they would have took sheltered in Government controlled areas of Syria? Add to that the other millions is Turkey, Jordan and Iraq and in Rebel controlled areas. It is true there are foreign fighters and Islamists released from syrian jail by Assad himself to derail the revolution. The plan worked as it kept the West from arming the FSA and those fighters turned against FSA. Meanwhile heavy support with arms and fighters from HA and Iran on the regime side.