United Nations And The Politics Of Sanctions; The Syrian Debacle

Project and Seminar Material for International Relations

United Nations And The Politics Of Sanctions; The Syrian Debacle


Conflict is never a sign of development but a darkness and economic doom to any given state or society, hence it should be treated with high handedness. United Nations and the Politics of Sanctions the Syrian Debacle is a topical issue in all Cable Networks, both the electronic and the paper media looking for adequate attention and a possible answer due to the battle and face off between Russia and US, permanent members of the Security Council. It also shows the bearing of this study, it highlighted.

The introduction, statement of the problem, objective of the study, significance of the study, literature review, theoretical framework, method of data collection, conclusion and recommendations the focus of this study is to access the UN Security Council resolutions in achieving a peaceful regime in Syria in spite of the confusions within the UN Security Council, the broad objective is to ascertain the role of the UN Security Council in the management of the Syrian crisis. Qualitative method was used to gather data, the findings were characterized by the division of the UN Security Council in spite of their enviable roles in maintenance of global peace and security.

The recommendation, the veto power of the permanent members of the Security Council should be eliminated and simple majority system should be used under the supervision of great powers such as US, with the cooperation of the permanent members of the Security Council with this peace is achievable. This abstract X-rays the mechanism of the Security Council and the possible methods adopted to reach the possible solution to the Syrian crisis. Whether Assad or the Syrian National Council will be considered to carry out the democratic processes after the peace settlement.

Chapter Five

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

It is hard to imagine what it felt like to be Bashar al-Assad, the President of Syria, watching the footage of Gaddafi being dragged dastardly through the streets of Sirte in Libya before being killed. The wave of protests and demonstrations that gripped Arab nations popularly called the ‘Arab Spring’ has led to the end of many long-serving regimes like the ones in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen. The protest in Syria began in January, 2011 and is currently the focus of international attention. This protest has degenerated into unspeakable carnage and destruction that by November, 2012 over 40,000 people have died and a lot of cities and towns left in ruins. A bookmaker’s bet following the precedent that has emerged over the past several months will be that the regime of al-Assad will eventually collapse. This is a sensible assumption, but it is also safe to argue that Syria stands unique in circumstances and the end of the al-Assad regime might be entirely up to al-Assad

Most countries condemn the violent crackdown on the opposition and protesters by the Syrian government. They have also decried the degeneration of this crisis into a full blown civil war and the gross violation of human rights in Syria. The Arab league has called for the UN Security Council to send a peace keeping mission to Syria and has called on Arab nations to severe diplomatic relations with the al-Assad regime. The United States has ruled out military action in Syria. This means that for now an international intervention like we saw in Libya seems improbable, though CNN reports that the US has been gathering intelligence on Syrian military sites and activities and is monitoring and intercepting communication of key Syrian officials.

The end of the al-Assad regime is inevitable. There is only so long the al-Assad regime can sustain this carnage and tragic destruction. The crucial question is, how long can this brutal regime hold back the opposition, the Arab League and the condemnation of the international community? Al-Assad has the benefit of retrospect in considering which path to follow in ending the current crisis. He can choose to follow his father’s footsteps and attempt to crush the uprising hoping it will go away while offering small concessions like a referendum on the Constitution. For this path to be successful however, he would have to take his country back to the 80’s where this method of oppression was not unusual. This path seems unlikely to succeed with the prevailing realities on the ground. He could also follow the favourable path of Yemeni’s Ali Abdullah Saleh who handed over power to a transitional government and negotiated a favourable immunity deal. This path seems plausible and might satisfy both the opposition and the international community. Another option for al-Assad will be the path of Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak who handed over power relatively late to his former military colleagues. This path like the previous one seems also plausible. Finally, Muammar Gaddafi’s path is also available to al-Assad. Gaddafi appeared to be delusional to his last breadth and didn’t handover power till he lost his life trying to hold on to power. Sadly, in an interview with Russian Today TV on the 8th of November, 2012, Bashar al-Assad indicated that he would stay and die in Syria. This seems to be the Gaddafi option and path.

In analysing the end game, it is hoped that with the end of the US elections, the Obama administration might be more amenable to a more concerted and proactive policy to end this carnage and quagmire. This is because President Obama would no longer be bound by political posturing and exigencies that limited his ability to take a more proactive position on the crisis. Prime Minister David Cameron of the United Kingdom seemed to be thinking and strategising along the same line. Speaking to the media during a visit to Jordan, Mr. Cameron said the Syrian crisis would top the list of issues he intended to discuss with the re-elected President Obama.

Since the international community is so far not interested in intervening to end this catastrophe, we might be wondering, how long can Al-Assad hold on? But the real question though is, how long can the will of the opposition hold? If the precedent of the Arab Spring is anything to go by, the answer to that question would be, “a very long time.” Only

The UN Security Council has the responsibility of maintaining global peace and security it has recorded some land mark achievement since its inception after the Second World War because of the characters of the big five, the world has experienced relative peace. Hence the world is watching the big five as they respond to the Syrian crisis. Steps are taken in order to address the ongoing civil war in Syria but the three veto of Russia and China has debunked the process of the collective security mechanism, in spite of that, Kofi Annan six points agenda were also neglected, while the killing goes on.

In international relations power is the object of the study and the interest of one state supersede all other interests, and clash of interests always leads to conflicts. UN Security Council should consider the responsibility to protect and shade their interests for the sake of humanity, if the Syria crisis moves on the crisis will spread to neighbouring states and the Syrian state may be a breeding ground, for terrorist to operate hence the region will be a threat to global peace and security.

Revolution occurs as a result of inadequate political goods, abuse of human rights, sit tight posture of leaders and non involvement of citizens in management of their own affairs. For effective leadership role in the United Nations Security Council the veto power used by the five permanent members should be removed from the UN Charter and give chance to simple majority voting.

Dialogue, negotiation and arbitration should be used between warring parties before resorting to war and the UN Security Council should monitor these activities with urgency using powerful states like US to moderate the conflicting parties at the watch of other Security Council members because power is a major element in international relations.


In this study, we want to make the following recommendations that will help to re-position the UN Security Council in the 21st century as well as giving adequate attention to crisis regions in the world

  1. The veto of the five permanent members should be removed in the charter and simple majority voting system should be adopted, because the veto is used by the permanent members to frustrate the mechanism of the collective security of the Security Council of the United Nations.
  2. Government should respect the rights of their citizens, governance is a collective responsibility not a family affairs hence leaders should respect the rights of their citizens because political sovereignty is in the hands of the people.
  3. Dialogue, negotiation and arbitration should be used between government and citizens before resorting to war. The people of Syria should settle the dispute themselves because outsiders will only key in their interest first before the interest of the Syrians.
  4. Powerful states, like the US should be in the fore front to manage conflicts in developing states because power is the key element in international politics.

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