Military action comes to an end in Aleppo as Syrian troops have regained the city, which for the last four years has been the focal point of the civil war in the country. This has been confirmed by Russian ambassador to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin. On the ground reporters from the World’s news media have also confirmed that, for the time being at least the offensive on the city has ceased.
The news will be scant joy to the rebels or their supporters, as the rebels have agreed a deal to hand Aleppo back to government control. Though the question of the events leading up to the surrender will ensue, as several sources had confirmed that there were horrific atrocities taking place at the scene of the fighting, with many pictures hitting social media. It also prompted UN secretary general to ask for atrocities to stop being committed, as it was reported that government forces were going from door to door killing those they found.
Russia has denied these allegations and earlier today had agreed to a ceasefire to allow citizens to leave the increasingly smaller rebel held territory in the city.
The speed of the finish after this announcement will possibly only raise more questions than answers.
It is hoped though that this will signal the end of Syria’s four year civil war that has killed thousands and displaced millions. Though what happens now will also be tricky. The UN has stated that they hold Syria, Iran and Russia accountable for the atrocities that had taken place in regaining the city. Many in the western world will be pushing for tough action on the Syrian regime, which has been accused of numerous war crimes throughout the conflict.
Also what of the repercussions for Iran and Russia? In recent times the US has began thawing its relations with Iran, though President elect Donald Trump has made it clear that he’s no fan of the regime there, and this may give him the ammunition he needs to torpedo a recent deal to allow sanctions to be lifted. Though his position on Russia is less clear, it’s well known that at the very least Mr Trump and Mr Putin are at least cordial and this may allow Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad to escape with the most minor of punishments.
This may be the very last assault on common decency and humanity after what has occurred over the last four years in the country. It would certainly be the final insult to the lives of those who’ve been lost in the conflict. Those who have been left behind would seek for President Al-Assad to face the stiffest punishments possible, and they would have plenty of agreement from many in the west.
Joseph is a 34 year old freelance writer from London. He has a wide interest in politics and specialises in the subject. He's also a blog writer in his spare time.