Syrian's opposition groups supposedly agreed to talks on Thursday to negotiate with President Bashar al-Assad's regime, but they continue to insist that the leader himself step down. The participants allegedly demonstrated that they are eager to negotiate but they've made it clear that they want Assad and his aides to quit power.
Those outside the country are looking to remove Assad from power, and to establish in his place a transitional government that would be crafted within roughly six months. Shortly after, elections would be held for leadership within 18 months. Opposition groups appear to be struggling to form a consensus for negotiations over the situation.
Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian stated that “terrorist groups pretending to be moderate opponents and seeking to determine the future of Syria and the region will not be permitted,.” He further stated that “only the people of Syria can decide the future of the country.” Saudi Foriegn Minister Adel al-Jubeir also reaffirmed that Assad needs to go. “Assad has two choices: leave through negotiations, which would be the fastest and easiest, or he will be removed by force, because the Syrian people refuse for this man to be allowed to stay in power,” according to Jubeir. But whether or not the Syrian people actually want him gone is a heated question that is still up for debate.
The U.S. and its allies have been fighting in Syria for 4 years now and neither party appears to be close to defaulting on their position anytime soon. This battle has already cost taxpayers billions, it has displaced millions of people, the only fruit that this conflict seems to have produced is simply more violence.
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