Syria


Turkish-Syrian Rapprochement: Rhetoric and Motivations

During a routine press conference on 12 August, Turkish Foreign Affairs Minister, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, casually mentioned a brief discussion he had had with Faisal al-Miqdad, the Syrian Foreign Minister, on the sidelines of a Non-Aligned Movement meeting in October 2021. A few days later, President Erdogan denied that Turkey had territorial claims in Syria and […]

The Regional Geopolitical Implications of the Ukrainian Conflict for Syria

  The Russian intervention in September 2015 was a central turning point in the Syrian conflict. The resulting territorial regime gains, the ensuing stalemate, the deadlock in political negotiations and the inability to induce meaningful change in Syria frustrated Assad’s detractors and slowly deprioritised resolution of the conflict on the international agenda. However, as the […]

The Hellish Cycle Continues for Syria: The Economic Impacts of Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine

Introduction Regarding its worldwide consequences, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in late February 2022 is probably the most significant historical event since the US- and British-led invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2003. In addition to its catastrophic humanitarian impact in eastern Europe, the war in Ukraine is already having a wide impact on the global […]

The PYD-PKK Relationship Under Scrutiny

Introduction The leadership of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) has recently amplified its critique of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES), and in particular of the commander-in-chief of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Mazloum Abdi. The old guard in the PKK are also increasingly demonstrating a clear inclination towards co-existence with the […]

Understanding Syria’s Enduring Crisis

As part of its efforts to provide a nuanced understanding of the conflict’s dynamics and trends, the ‘Wartime and Post-Conflict in Syria’ (WPCS) team of the Middle East Directions Programme has collectively reflected on the mass of research on Syria produced in the past decade. For the purposes of this blog, we defined ‘research’ in […]

“Before Corona, I will die of hunger”: The socio-economic impact of Covid-19 on the Syrian population and new challenges for the regime

For the Syrian regime, which now controls over 70 per cent of Syrian territory, the Covid-19 virus might represent one of the most significant social crises since the beginning of the war. As more and more of the population is under its domination, Damascus has been clutching at solutions to the increasing challenges with very […]