09:11 GMT28 November 2020
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    Syrian American Council Government Relations Director told Sputnik President Barack Obama must take needed steps to prevent the next US president from inheriting an out of control crisis in Syria

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — President Barack Obama must take needed steps to prevent the next US president from inheriting an out of control crisis in Syria, Syrian American Council Government Relations Director Mohammed Alaa Ghanem told Sputnik.

    "I would like them [the Obama administration] to make a decision, ideally, that this is not a situation that Mr. Obama should bequeath to his successor," Ghanem said on Monday.

    However, Ghanem added "I am not sure the administration is there."

    In his final nine months in office, Obama should establish a "real commitment to ending the conflict" in Syria, including providing additional support to the Syrian opposition, and further diplomatic efforts Ghanem says are "lacking."

    The Obama administration recently negotiated a cessation of hostilities agreement in Syria with Russia, in an attempt to provide humanitarian assistance to besieged cities, and reinvigorate stalled political talks. The most recent talks scheduled between the government in Damascus and opposition leaders fell apart in early February.

    During an event hosted by the Arab Center Washington, DC on Monday, Ghanem argued that for the remainder of his term, Obama will likely focus on "reducing violence" through temporary ceasefires.

    Ghanem, who works with both US policymakers and Syrian opposition networks, characterized Obama administration officials he has spoken to as having "low expectations on the political track," namely, a political resolution and transition in Syria.

    According to the United Nations, the ongoing five-year civil war in Syria has resulted in the death of more than a quarter million Syrians with more than ten million who are internally displaced or have fled the country as refugees.

    Related:

    US, Russia Use 'Other Channels' to Discuss Ceasefire in Syria - Pentagon
    US Requires Russian Comment on 'Ceasefire Violations' in Syria - DOS
    US, Russia Agree to Continue Discussions on Flights Over Syria - Pentagon
    Tags:
    cessation of hostilities, Barack Obama, Syria, US
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