UN: Syrian peace deal can’t be enforced

Orient Net - Foreign Policy 2016-01-30 10:13:00

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In a confidential strategy paper exclusively obtained by Foreign Policy, the office of the United Nations’ top envoy to Syria warns that the U.N. would be unable to monitor or enforce any peace deal that might emerge from landmark political talks underway in Geneva.

“The current international and national political context and the current operational environment strongly suggest that a U.N. peacekeeping response relying on international troops or military observers would be an unsuitable modality for ceasefire monitoring,” according to the “Draft Ceasefire Modalities Concept Paper” by U.N. envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura’s team.

In the short term, de Mistura believes regime’s forces and the opposition would themselves have to monitor any cease-fire agreement. If ground security improves, the U.N. envoy’s office could widen its role in Syria, provide training and resources to locals, and act as a go-between between the key Syrian combatants and international players.

De Mistura’s paper outlines three options for monitoring a cease-fire: deploying a “fully independent international” monitoring operation, relying on local monitors with technical support from the international community, and deploying a more traditional team of local and international monitors.