The US withdrawal from Syria without a pull-out from Iraq is deemed as a plot. Russia will host a trilateral meeting in January to discuss the repercussions of the American withdrawal from Syria and how to build on this without relinquishing any of the positive transformations in the war-torn country. In other words, Russia will not let others reap the benefits at the expense of the Syrians and will counter any terrorist activities as a result of this withdrawal.
The end of 2018 brought many surprises and revealed some important trances on the Syrian track. Some regional powers have realized that this pull-out is a very positive sign for a brighter future for Syria. The UAE embassy has reopened in Damascus and the Bahraini embassy will be reopened shortly. Saudi Arabia has nothing against Syria returning to the Arab League. Tunisia has resumed flights with Syria. The Syrian army has entered Manbij after the Kurdish militias (YPG) pulled out prior the Turkish operation in the region, thus disrupting Ankara’s plans.
It is clear that several Arab countries decided to change strategy regarding Syria, to have a presence in Syria and not to leave it to be under the dominance of Iran. They consider that Syria’s return to the Arab orbit will limit Iranian power in the region and as it was stated by the UAE’s minister of state for foreign affairs, Anwar Gargash, “communication with Damascus will not leave the region open to Iranian interference.”
Talks by all the Arab states regarding the transition of power in Syria will come to nought, especially taking into account that with any election to be held in Syria, the winner is highly predictableMaria Dubovikova
Talks by all the Arab states regarding the transition of power in Syria will come to nought, especially taking into account that with any election to be held in Syria, the winner is highly predictable. Syria should yet nurture political figures strong enough to replace the current leadership. For now the Arab countries can go for a deal with Assad proposing him to be welcomed by the Arab states and to direct him away from the Iran. The predicament of Iran and its interference is taken into account by Russia, as Moscow works out an opportunity to replace Iran-backed forces with the Sudanese army, which will limit Israeli opportunities in sowing problems on the Israeli-Syrian border and bombarding Iran-related facilities in Syria.