Quamishli Clashes Bring Arab-Kurd Tensions to the Surface

In-Depth Analysis Quamishli Clashes Bring Arab-Kurd Tensions to the Surface In one of the most intense eruptions of violence in northeast Syria in recent memory, Autonomous Administration security forces have seized control over Tayy neighbourhood, the main Quamishli stronghold of the Syiran Government-aligned National Defense Forces (NDF). On 20 April, armed clashes broke out following […]

Parliament Sets 26 May Date for Syria’s Fateful Presidential Election

In-Depth Analysis Parliament Sets 26 May Date for Syria’s Fateful Presidential Election On 18 April, Speaker of the Syrian People’s Assembly Hammouda Sabbagh announced that the nation’s long-anticipated presidential election will be conducted on 26 May. Candidate nominations will be received during a 10-day window, beginning 19 April. As of writing, no candidates have been […]

New Lows as Syria Beset by Fuel, Fiscal, and COVID Crises

In-Depth Analysis New Lows as Syria Beset by Fuel, Fiscal, and COVID Crises Syria is at a new crisis point as converging circumstances lay bare the extent of state fragility in the country. Syria is beset by three concurrent crises: acute fuel shortages, deepening fiscal instability, and spiking COVID-19 infections. Interruptions to the oil supply […]

Brussels V: No Surprises as Donors Embrace Syria Status Quo

In-Depth Analysis Brussels V: No Surprises as Donors Embrace Syria Status Quo The Brussels conference came to a close on 30 March, with donor countries pledging 4.4 billion USD in funding to the Syria response in 2021, plus an additional 7 billion USD in conditional loans. A further 2.2 billion USD in funding was pledged […]

Series of Strikes Show Pressures Building on Northwest Syria Aid Response

In-Depth Analysis Series of Strikes Show Pressures Building on Northwest Syria Aid Response A series of attacks in northwest Syria in late March has been among the most notable conflict incidents in the region since the Turkish-Russian ceasefire agreement halted major military operations in the region more than one year ago (see: Syria Update 9 […]

10 Years On: Adrift, the Syrian Aid Response Awaits a Paradigm Shift

The anniversary of the Syrian uprising, often reckoned from 15 March 2011, witnessed myriad preliminary steps from the international community that signal emerging priorities as the deadlocked conflict drags on. Last week’s Syria Update examined the state of the aid response and how development and humanitarian approaches should adapt to hard realities in the country (see: Syria Update 15 March 2011). This week, we delve into trends shaping the policy and political space around Syria, as the armed conflict remains — for now — stubbornly frozen. Two diverging trends exist in the international community’s approach to Damascus. On the one hand are a growing number of accountability measures, including political pressure, legal challenges, and economic sanctions. These are approaches led by the U.S. and Europe that primarily aim to hold the Government of Syria to account, and they are gaining speed, even though significant questions over efficacy remain unanswered. These approaches are set against a nascent effort led by Russia to usher the Government of Syria through a period of international censure and cement Moscow’s own interests in the country while growing its diplomatic profile in the wider region.

Accountability within Reach? International Community Digs in on Syria

On 30 January, the Ministry of Administrative Development (MoAD) announced that 10,076 demobilised Syrian Arab Army soldiers had passed the employment exam taken by candidates for the two topmost tiers of public-sector work. While the employment pipeline directing demobilised soldiers into public service is not new, it has arguably never been more important in Syria’s modern history, and it is changing significantly.

Syrian Public Health after COVID-19: Entry Points and Lessons Learned from the Pandemic Response

Executive Summary COVID-19 has forced already overburdened Syrians to confront accelerated price rises, severe goods and service shortages, and the further erosion of household resilience amidst an unprecedented economic downturn. Syrians may be well acquainted with such privations by now, but the confluence of conflict and COVID-19 has produced hardships greater than many have faced […]