• Malik al-Hafez | 26 Jan 2021

    Syria’s Upcoming Presidential Elections: Why Damascus Insists on Holding these Elections According to the Established Timeline?

    At the end of December 2020, the Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal al-Miqdad said during an official visit to the Russian capital Moscow that the presidential elections in Syria [which are scheduled to take place in the middle of 2021] “will be held at the normal time without any delay”, stressing that they will be held in isolation from the results of the work of the Syrian Constitutional Committee (SCC).

  • EPC | 31 Dec 2020

    The Stumbling Block of Ain Issa and the Struggle for Eastern Syria

    ​The ongoing negotiation and military conflicts over Ain Issa underline the importance of eastern Syria for all the players involved in the Syrian crisis. Influence in this region has come to be calculated in metres. Given Russia which aspires to achieve a breakthrough in a region of an important economic and strategic importance, Turkey which aspires to enhance its influence in the Syrian map, and the US which considers the eastern Syria regions of a critical importance in managing its policies towards the Syrian issue, this region, which is located outside what is known as "Useful Syria", is an important site in the strategies of local players, considering the important economic and political returns from controlling it.

  • ​Malik al-Hafez | 15 Dec 2020

    Russia Revives the Issue of Repatriating Syrian Refugees: Interests and Expectations

    The International Conference on the Return of Syrian Refugees was held in the Syrian capital Damascus under the auspices of Russia, and its proceedings ended on 11 and 12 November 2020, against the backdrop of the absence of all countries influencing the international decision and the countries that host the highest number of Syrian refugees, at a time that has its own political significance in relation to the Russian role in the Syrian issue and that reveals the nature of this role and its orientations during the period ahead.

  • EPC | 10 Dec 2020

    The Syrian Constitutional Committee: Is it a Suitable Tool to Solve the Crisis?

    ​The actors in the Syrian crisis reduced the solution to the Constitutional Committee in what they considered a translation of the outputs of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2254, adopted in December 2015, which gave UN approval to a plan calling for a ceasefire in Syria and holding talks between the parties to the conflict, within a timetable of approximately two years to form a unity government, or what is called a "transitional governing body", and then hold parliamentary and presidential elections.

  • EPC | 29 Nov 2020

    Expansion of Israeli Strikes Against Iranian Positions in Syria: Is there a Change in the Rules of the Game?

    Israel has recently expanded its strikes against Iranian militias in Syria. Those strikes have included areas that extend from the south to the east of Syria. Interestingly, the new round of Israeli strikes has been characterised by two distinct features, namely: striking the command of the 7th Division of the Syrian regime forces, and explicitly declaring Israel’s responsibility for the strikes.

  • EPC | 18 Nov 2020

    Will American Forces Withdraw from Eastern Syria?

    ​Although the word "withdrawal" from eastern Syria has been repeated by US President Donald Trump and the staff of his administration more than once, and accusations were simultaneously directed towards the so-called "deep state" of delaying the execution of orders and manipulating procedures, this trend has taken a more serious turn recently in light of the existence of motives that drive it and people that are capable of accomplishing it.

  • EPC | 03 Nov 2020

    Are the Russian-Turkish Arrangements in Idlib Over?

    The Russian strike against the Jabal al-Duwailah camp in Idlib constitutes a turning point in the course of the Russian-Turkish understandings in northern Syria. This strike has targeted Turkey’s most important proxies in the country’s northwest, namely Faylaq al-Sham (the Levant Corps), in light of the state of calm that the two sides established in the region, and the de-escalation of the demarcation lines since the armistice agreement in March 2020. This shift raises many questions about its causes and the extent of its impact on the existing balances in northwest Syria.

  • Malik al-Hafez | 02 Nov 2020

    Are We Witnessing a New Exchange of Spheres of Influence between Russia and Turkey in Northern Syria?

    On 26 October 2020, Russian warplanes bombed a camp belonging to the Turkish-backed Faylaq al-Sham (the Levant Corps) faction in the northwest of the Syrian province of Idlib, which led to the killing of dozens of members of this faction. This targeting was a drastic development, considering that Russia has never previously targeted any Turkish-backed factions since the signing of the Moscow Agreement (5 March 2020).