Western powers rejected Russian proposal for Syria’s Assad to step aside in 2012

Former Finnish president and Nobel peace prize laureate Martti Ahtisaari.
Former Finnish president and Nobel peace prize laureate Martti Ahtisaari (Getty photos)

According to press reports in Britain recently, it has been revealed that the Russian ambassador, Vitaly Churkin, laid out a three-point plan in 2012 which included a proposal for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to cede power at some point after peace talks had begun between the regime and opposition parties.

This proposal, however, was rebuffed at the time by the US and other Western nations. In commenting on this peace proposal, former Finnish president and Nobel peace prize laureate Martti Ahtisaari said the failure to consider the Russian offer had led to a “self-made disaster”.

The same report in The Guardian noted that in 2012 “the death toll from the Syrian conflict was estimated to be about 7,500. The UN believes that toll passed 220,000 at the beginning of [2015], and continues to climb. The chaos has led to the rise of Islamic State. Over 11 million Syrians have been forced out of their homes.”

This revelation about how the the US, Britain and France rejected Russia’s proposal in 2012, appears to have been ignored so far by Australia’s mainstream press.

To learn more about this story, read The Guardian’s report ‘West ‘ignored Russian offer in 2012 to have Syria’s Assad step aside”, Sep 17, 2015 here.

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