This "cessation of hostilities" is incredibly fragileby Martin Fletcher / March 9, 2016 / Leave a comment
The cessation of hostilities in Syria that was brokered by the US and Russia and began on 27th February is just about holding. Aid organisations have begun delivering food to besieged and starving communities. In Geneva today talks resume on ending a five-year war that has caused 470,000 deaths, displaced half Syria’s population and reduced many of its cities to rubble (though in practice, not all delegations invited to attend the talks will arrive this week).
All of which begs a question. After so much horror, why is there so little celebration? Why is the reaction so muted? The short answer is because nobody trusts Vladimir Putin, whose ultimate goal is not peace, but to shore up Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, divide Europe and reassert Russia’s influence in th…