U.N.’s Syria Cease-Fire Plan a Risky Gamble, but Worth It

United Nations special envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura, speaks during  a press conference in Damascus, Syria, Nov. 11, 2014 (AP photo, released by the Syrian official  news agency SANA).
United Nations special envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura, speaks during a press conference in Damascus, Syria, Nov. 11, 2014 (AP photo, released by the Syrian official news agency SANA).

Is the United Nations heading for another diplomatic humiliation in Syria? Over the past week, analysts have been picking over a proposal by the organization’s envoy, Staffan de Mistura, to initiate a series of local cease-fires between the Syrian government and at least some rebel groups, beginning in the embattled city of Aleppo. In a best-case scenario, these “incremental freeze zones” could coagulate into a wider cessation of hostilities, allowing all parties to focus on the main fight against the so-called Islamic State (IS). The plan has received some slight encouragement from the Syrian regime and a great deal of […]

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