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Both sides deny there’s civil war in Syria
Russia, U.S. trade charges
“We don’t supply Syria or anyone else with things that are used to fight against peaceful demonstrators, unlike the United States, which regularly supplies that region with such equipment,” Mr. Lavrov said, according to the Russian-owned RT network.
Peace plan ignored
Despite its vetoes at the United Nations, Moscow generally has supported the peace plan crafted by international envoy Kofi Annan.
But that cease-fire plan has failed to prevent a series of deadly attacks by government forces on Syrian rebels and violent retaliations by opposition fighters.
Analysts say the first signs that the conflict is turning sectarian are emerging.
“The bulk of the opposition continues to focus on the political struggle as opposed to looking at the struggle through the lens of sectarianism,” said Mr. Gerges.
“But the reality is that the Syrian conflict is turning more and more sectarian, we have plenty evidence of neighbors turning against neighbors and this does not bode well for the crisis in Syria.”
Analysts say that the language of U.N. officials is designed to mobilize the international community to step in before it is too late.
“What we want from the U.N. is direct intervention to prevent a civil war from happening,” said Sami Ibrahim of the Syrian Network for Human Rights in the Syrian city of Homs.
“This is a criminal, bloodthirsty regime, and it will kill thousands [more]. The international community is seeing our children, our brothers being killed daily. Where is the U.N. against that? We need immediate action.”
• Louise Osborne and Janelle Dumalaon, both in Berlin, contributed to this report. Ashish Kumar Sen and Susan Crabtree reported from Washington.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Susan Crabtree is an award-winning investigative reporter with more than 15 years of reporting experience in Washington, D.C. Her reporting about bribery, corruption and conflict-of-interest issues on Capitol Hill has led to several FBI and ethics investigations, as well as consequences for members within their caucuses and at the ballot box. Susan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Ashish Kumar Sen is a reporter covering foreign policy and international developments for The Washington Times.
Prior to joining The Times, Mr. Sen worked for publications in Asia and the Middle East. His work has appeared in a number of publications and online news sites including the British Broadcasting Corp., Asia Times Online and Outlook magazine.
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