Thursday, April 12, 2012

Syria ceasefire: five potential stumbling blocks

If Kofi Annan's plan fails, the UN security council will lose patience and get tougher with President Bashar al-Assad

Ian Black
, Middle East editor, Thursday 12 April 2012

"Opposition demonstrations

If the ceasefire holds – a big if – the Syrian opposition will test the Annan plan's right to peaceful assembly by holding mass demonstrations, probably as soon as Friday, the usual day for protest during the 13-month uprising. President Bashar al-Assad must decide whether to allow them. Protesters will need to be non-violent to avoid any pretext for a crackdown. Offically organised loyalist counter-demonstrations and provocations by the security forces are likely. The presence of UN monitors and the media, also required by Annan, will embolden anti-Assad forces....."

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