Violence and bloodshed have been the hallmark of Syria for the last 13 months. There appears to be no end to the ongoing brutalities either from the hands of the security forces loyal to the regime or rebels. The government is now accusing United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon of encouraging rebels to carry out terrorist activities in the country. The blame comes a day after the suicide bombing in al-Midan – a neighboring city of Damascus – wherein nine innocent people were killed.
On the other hand, the UN chief says that President Bashar al-Assad has violated the cease-fire agreement as security forces have continued to kill innocent civilians. UN-Arab League Special Envoy to Syriastruck a six point peace deal with the president earlier this month to restore peace and stability in the country. According to the peace agreement, the security forces were to be withdrawn from population centers by April 12 and a way was to be paved for meaningful dialogue with the rebels. But that has not been done yet. The dictator has violated the peace plan despite immense pressure from the international community.
Human rights activists working in the violence-wracked country say that more than 360 people have been killed since the cease-fire deadline. They say that more than 10,000 people have been killed so far since the uprising started in the country in March last year. However, there are no specific numbers available on persons abducted and tortured by the security forces. The dictator continues to oppress the pro-democracy people with complete impunity.
Syrians were inspired by the popular uprising in Tunisia and Egypt, where dictators were overthrown within weeks of protests against them. They also took to the streets in thousands and started protesting against the regime. People of Syria are demanding an end to the dictator’s rule in the country and want to set up democracy. They also demand that people be given civil and liberty rights, besides freedom of speech and freedom of expression.
What is the way forward? The possible way forward appears to be arming the rebels and help the opposition to gather under one flag. Saudi Arabia, Qatar and France have also urged the international community to physically intervene in Syria and play a role to oust the dictator. This appears to be the only way forward.