China to France: Let’s fix this Syria thing

In a startling turn of events, China is now calling for an end to the conflict in Syria. AFP reports that the country will send an envoy to Saudi Arabia, Egypt and France to discuss a solution:

“Foreign ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said the visit by Assistant Foreign Minister Zhang Ming would ‘increase communication and consultations with parties concerned over the political resolution of the Syrian crisis’.

It was hoped the talks with Saudi Arabia, Egypt and France would ‘build up consensus and push for a fair, peaceful and proper solution of the Syrian issue’, Liu told a regular briefing.

Syria’s Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said Wednesday that Damascus was ready to cooperate with Beijing’s six-point plan after meeting Chinese envoy Li Huaxin, the country’s former ambassador to Damascus.

Damascus was also ready to ‘cooperate with the envoy of the United Nations’ and the Arab League, former UN secretary general Kofi Annan, who is due in Syria on Saturday, Muallem said.”

However, in keeping with his trend of being sceptical over Middle Eastern negotiations, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said he was pessimistic the UN would successfully pass any resolution regarding intervention in the war-torn country. Reuters reports that

“The Security Council is scheduled to meet Monday to discuss the Arab Spring uprisings at a high-level meeting that will likely focus on the conflict in Syria.

The United States has drafted a resolution condemning Syria’s crackdown on protesters but the proposal faces a possible veto by Russia and China, which have so far shielded Syria from international action.

Some EU foreign ministers have been hoping that the end of the Russian presidential election last week might be an opportunity for a change in Moscow’s stance.

‘We were hoping that once the elections in Russia were over dialogue with the Russian authorities could be more consensual,’ Juppe said at a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Copenhagen.

‘But for the moment this hope has not been confirmed … Russia continues to block it on different points and there is not an agreement on the text of this resolution. I don’t know if things will evolve here between now and Monday.'”

What do you think? Is there any hope for peace in Syria? Does it lie in international intervention?

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