Finally, it appears as if the United States and other Persian Gulf nations have agreed to arm ragtag Syrian rebels with sophisticated arms to fight with security forces loyal to the regime. The rebels and opposition forces are embattled with the stubborn Bashar al-Assad for the last 14 months and all efforts by the international community to resolve the issue amicably have failed. However, the United States did not officially confirm the help being rendered to the rebels. Pleading anonymity, some senior US officials have confirmed the reports that the US is coordinating with other Persian Gulf nations to supply lethal weapons to the rebels.
The US officials also confirmed that Obama administration has broadened contacts with neighboring countries of Syria to facilitate supply of arms and ammunition to the rebels through borders of these countries. It appears as if Obama administration has changed its earlier policy to resolve the issue through peaceful means. After 14 months of the uprising, it is very clear the political solution of the crisis could not be evolved despite repeated efforts of the international community including Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The Arab League also failed to bring the dictator to any suitable solution of the problem.
The United Nations says that more than 9,000 civilians have been killed so far by the security forces loyal to the regime. However, there are no exact numbers available on abduction and political prisoners. Human rights activists working in the volatile country say that more than 5,000 civilians are languishing in different jails of the country just for raising voice against the autocrat.
Now, the rebels are being provided with millions of dollars funding each month by Saudi Arabia and Qatar to buy weapons and woo more defections from the security forces. A week back, the rebels said they were running short of ammunition but now they say there has been enough stockpile of weapons to fight with Bashar al-Assad’s security forces. Leaders of the rebels say they have bought the weapons from black market of neighboring countries and elements sympathetic to them in the security forces. Saudi Arabia and Qatar have long been urging the United States to arm the rebels as it was the only option left to bring down the dictator.
Muslim Brotherhood has also revived its organisation in the violence-wracked country after a long time and is also helping the rebels to obtain weapons from neighboring countries. A number of the leaders of the rebels have confirmed fresh supply of weapons from neighboring countries and are hopeful to defeat the security forces if the international community continued to help them. We hope that Bashar al-Assad will understand sensitivity of the situation and announce a meaningful dialogue with the rebels to avert civil war in the country and prevent more destruction and deaths.