The 18-month-old popular uprisingin Syria has in recent weeks been bolstered by desertion of diplomats of thatcountry based abroad and expression of allegiance to the rebels who havesucceeded to hit targets even in capital Damascus. Syrian President HafezAl-Assad however continues to ignore the might of the rebellion relying on hisbastions of power manned by close relatives and the minority Alawite sect.
International news agencies hasreported that the United States has accused Russia and China of effectivelyprolonging Syria's bloodletting by blocking efforts at the UN Security Councilto approve tough sanctions aimed at reining in the Assad government.
Russian Foreign Minister SergeiLavrov has said at a summit of Pacific rim states that Moscow and Westernpowers remained at loggerheads over how to defuse the conflict - a diplomaticimpasse in which Western officials say violence has flourished. "Our U.S.partners prefer measures like threats, increased pressure and new sanctionsagainst both Syria and Iran. We do not agree with this in principle,"Lavrov told reporters. Russia and Iran are Assad's closest allies.
Lavrov has been quoted to havesaid Russia expected the Security Council later this month to formally endorsean agreement brokered by former UN Syria envoy Kofi Annan which envisages atransitional governing authority for Syria. Washington has angered Russia bygoing outside the United Nations to work with allies on the Syrian opposition'sbehalf. Reports say, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Lavrov it waspossible to return to the United Nations if Moscow and Beijing were ready toforego their vetoes and back stronger measures.
Late Friday two Syrian diplomatsin Malaysia announced late that they had joined the opposition, according to areport by pan-Arab television channel Al Arabiya. Two men identifyingthemselves as First Secretary Imad Ahmar and Attaché Mahmoud Obedi from Syria'sKuala Lumpur embassy read out a statement on the channel declaring their"support for the Syrian people's revolution against the tyrannicalregime".
The unrest in Syria has killed atleast 10,000 people since protests against President Assad broke out in March2011. Observers believe the Syrian President has not been yielding to risingdiscontent among the people of the country because of the arms support he isgetting from close ally, Russia. But ultimately such foreign support tosuppress a popular uprising might be to blame for failure of the move for anegotiated settlement of the crisis.
Even Egyptian President Morsi inhis address to the summit of the Non-Aligned Movement held in Iran last weekblamed the Assad regime for not yielding the popular democratic demands. Inprotest the Syrian delegation to the summit staged a walkout. Despite all theseclear signals of disapproval of repressive measures taken by him, PresidentAssad's forces stormed into a Palestinian refugee district in Damascus onSaturday, opposition activists said, after a four-day artillery assault on thesouthern suburb where rebels fighting to oust President Bashar al-Assad havedug in.
Assad's forces have preferred to useair power and artillery to hit areas where rebels are positioned and infantryraids normally occur only once many have fled. Activists said they feared forcivilian inhabitants in the latest offensive. As the war rages signs ofbrutalities on both sides are increasing throwing the otherwise peacefulcountry into a full-fledged civil war between the opposition and pro-Assadactivists who are banking on their hold on the arsenal procured to fightforeign enemies.
Assad's foreign friends in Russiashould realise that they cannot help retain an unpopular regime which is boundto collapse because of its war against its own population.