World powers meeting in Munich have announced a ceasefire plan for Syria. Fighting is supposed to stop in a week. But no Syrians were at the conference, leaving this observer skeptical about the implementation of the deal.
Syrian president Bashar al-Assad has given a rare interview to the media — to the BBC. Assad denied using barrel bombs. But British trauma surgeon David Nott was astonished to hear that, since he was nearly killed by one of the devices in Aleppo a few months ago.
Among the more than one million Syrians who've fled the war are Syrians of Armenian descent. Unlike most Syrian refugees, they're Christian. And many of them fear that if Syrian Bashar al-Assad leaves, they can never go home again.
Syria's official news agency, SANA, publishes a website in eight language — including most recently in Hebrew. The Syrian regime added Hebrew, the official language of Israel, to "gain the upper hand in the battle for public opinion."
In an exclusive interview with AFP in Damascus — his first since the alleged April 4 attack prompted a US airstrike on Syrian forces — Bashar al-Assad said his army had given up all its chemical weapons and that Syrian military power was not affected by the US strike.
The US is having some issues mobilizing a coalition in its new war on the militants of ISIS. US Secretary of State John Kerry has been traveling in the Middle East and says he has support from 10 Arab nations, but what that support actually means is uncertain.
Syrian Military defectors in Turkey talk about the role of the military in the uprising. Divisions within the military are deepening over violence against civilians. Orders to shoot protesters are enforced with executions.