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End of Arab League observer mission to Syria opens door to renewed clashes

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“The Syrian regime headed by Bashar Assad is doomed in the long run, but is likely to last longer than most believe,” writes Joshua Landis, director of the University of Oklahoma’s Center for Middle East Studies in a blog for Bitterlemons. “So long as the Syrian military leadership remains united, the opposition remains fragmented, and foreign powers remain on the sidelines, the Assad regime is likely to survive, but all three of these elements are changing, even if gradually, in the favor of the opposition.”

This week the international community will take one of its most aggressive steps against Syria so far. The United Nations Security Council will consider a draft resolution calling for Assad's resignation, reports CNN.

However, the resolution may not go any further – it faces opposition from Russia, an ally of Syria who has steadily resisted UN efforts to take more action there and holds veto power on the council.

International efforts and those of the Syrian opposition in exile have offered little hope to those suffering from the increased violence, writes Peter Harling, project director with the Middle East Program of the International Crisis Group in a blog for Foreign Policy. Without any serious efforts that provide tangible improvement, or at least the promise of it, the opposition is likely to turn to violence to achieve its goals, he writes. 

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