The Arab Spring protests reached Syria in March 2011, the pro-democracy uprising, initially demanding reforms, soon turned into a civil war and violence escalated as a result of the government forces utilizing brutality to suppress the civil movement. More than seven years of conflict lead to the deaths of over 400,000 Syrians; millions were forcibly displaced, and the country is devastated economically. Since the beginning of the conflict, more than four million Syrians have fled to neighboring countries such as Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan, and an estimated 6.1 million people have been displaced within Syria, bringing the total number of expelled Syrians to a staggering 11.5 million (UNHCR 2017).
The Aleppo Project Fellow Armenak Tokmajyan studies the development of the armed conflict in Aleppo, the evolution of armed groups and government forces, and their military tactics and strategies. The timeline analyzes the Geneva Peace Process and its implications on the ground. The report also sheds light on the humanitarian situation in the divided city. The extensive report includes 35 original maps designed by the author.
The report will be updated at the beginning of every month.
It has become a truism of conflict resolution to say that peace cannot be forced on a country and negotiations only work when the time is ripe. Is that moment approaching in Syria? A poll of Syrians by The Day After, an Istanbul-based research organisation, shows that a small majority now favour a negotiated settlement with the government. Of the 2,600 people polled inside and outside Syria, 54.7 per cent want to see talks that lead to a settlement. That is still low compared with some countries in conflict. A recent poll in Afghanistan showed that 71 per cent of respondents want a negotiated settlement with the Taliban even though only 4 per cent said they would prefer the return of the Taliban to power rather than the current government.