A Chapter Seven Resolution May Be Syria's Last Chance

Article Summary
Following the departure of United Nations envoy to Syria Kofi Annan, the time-buying game between Russia and Syria has come to a close, writes Ali Barada. The only way to change the situation in Syria is to pass a Chapter Seven resolution in the UN, which would authorize the use of force.

NEW YORK — Syria is entirely drawn into the midst of war. The international community, especially those claiming that this country has become an arena for a global conflict or for proxy wars, can no longer stand idle. The crisis is threatening regional and international security and peace. It is time to implement Chapter Seven.

The Syrian leadership has been lacking wisdom. It thought that a security solution was the only way to resolve this deep crisis, with Syrian citizens aspiring toward freedom. They can no longer be ignored. This is exactly what we learned in the Arab Spring.

The Syrian leadership told its citizens that the problem lies with those who are biased against the regime, not with the leaders. It resorted to aggression as well as to asking for Russia's support. It benefited little from the appointment of Kofi Annan, the United Nations-Arab League envoy to Syria.

For its part, Moscow also erred, and it even neglected its own interests in Syria and the Arab world at wide.

Kofi Annan has finally resigned, and Russia lost a long and bitter battle in international diplomacy. It has lost all of the privileges it had gradually achieved since the appointment of Annan as a mediator.

Annan tried in vain to curb the Syrian authorities' determination to settle the crisis militarily. He called on the regime to withdraw heavy weapons. He failed to unify the opposition. He tried to limit the militarization of the popular intifada against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad. Why did he stay so long? He had no friend or companion left in Damascus other than those who attended the Andrei Gromyko School of International Relations.

Weeks ago, it seemed that all of what Assad's Syria wanted from Annan was time and opportunities. But the most critical moment has arrived. What is going to happen now that Annan has resigned? Will Moscow allow Syria to become the center of a major proxy war? Will it really seek to renew the mission of the UNSMIS? Under what conditions will the US, Britain, France and the majority of member states in the international organization be persuaded that the Syrian people's fate cannot be left in the hands of those clinging to power?

The military options seem to be open for all possibilities in all cities and areas of Syria. However, the only way to restore diplomacy and the political solution is the Security Council's adoption of a resolution under Chapter Seven of the UN Charter. As a result, a replacement for Kofi Annan can be appointed to try to mediate between the combatants and facilitate the transfer of power, even if this requires the application of the six points of the Annan plan.

Some are saying that Assad is falling in Aleppo. Others believe that the Alawite mountains and the rest of the Syrian coast will be the last bastion of the Baaths. Some talk about maintaining the crescent of resistance at any cost, regardless of how narrow it gets. But that's just crazy talk!

Found in: un security council, un, syrian crisis, syria uprising, russia on syria, kofi annan, chapter vii

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