Saudi Arabia is said to be preparing to invite Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to a Leaders Summit in Riyadh, ending regional isolation. This would be a major move in the wake of the Assad regime’s chemical weapons use, which has outraged the global community.
1. Saudi Arabia’s invitation to Assad to Arab leaders summit
After a decade-long war fueled by regional and global powers in Syria, the country’s president Bashar al-Assad was invited to attend the Arab leaders summit in Riyadh by the Saudi Arabian government. This invitation marks an abrupt shift in the country’s stance towards Assad, who they had previously condemned for his role in the civil war. The Syrian leader has not left his country since the war began, and this move by Saudi Arabia could be seen as a recognition of his continued hold on power.
It is not just the Saudi Arabian government that is changing its stance towards Assad. Other Arab countries such as the UAE and Bahrain have also been reaching out to Damascus in recent months. However, this change in attitude by Saudi Arabia is particularly significant since it was one of the main backers of the Syrian opposition during the war. Furthermore, the invitation to the summit, which brings together leaders from across the Arab world, may also signal a wider shift in regional alliances. The agenda of the summit is yet to be announced, but it will be interesting to see how the presence of Assad will impact the discussions and decisions made by the Arab leaders.
2. Why Saudi Arabia is inviting Assad to the Arab Leaders Summit
One of the main reasons why Saudi Arabia has invited Syrian president Bashar al-Assad to the upcoming Arab Leaders Summit is to seek a path towards ending the ongoing conflict in Syria. The civil war that began in 2011 has had a devastating impact on Syrian citizens and neighboring countries alike. Saudi Arabia, along with several other Arab nations, has been supporting opposition forces in Syria in an effort to remove Assad from power. However, with the war dragging on and with no end in sight, many leaders in the region now see a political solution as the only viable option.
Another reason why Assad is being invited to the Arab Leaders Summit is to try and improve relations between Saudi Arabia and Syria. The two countries have had a strained relationship for years, with Saudi Arabia accusing Assad’s government of various human rights violations and supporting opposition forces. However, in light of recent geopolitical and economic developments in the region, Saudi Arabia may now see the benefits of normalizing ties with the Syrian government. By inviting Assad to the summit, Saudi Arabia also hopes to prevent other regional powers, such as Russia and Iran, from becoming even more influential in Syria and the wider Middle East.
3. The potential consequences of inviting Assad to the Arab Leaders Summit
1. Destabilization of the Summit: Inviting Bashar al-Assad to the Arab Leaders Summit may lead to a significant amount of tension between the countries attending the summit. With his participation, the leaders might find themselves divided in their opinions and alliances, creating instability within the conference. Additionally, as Assad’s regime is actively involved in the ongoing conflict in Syria, the summit could quickly turn into a showcase of the region’s differing political agendas.
- Increased political rifts between participating countries.
- Reduced cooperation and the possibility of a breakdown in summit discussions.
- Risk of physical confrontation between supporters and opponents of Assad’s presence.
2. International Backlash: The idea of inviting the Syrian President to the summit may draw heavy scrutiny from international organizations such as the United Nations and other countries who are actively participating in the fight to bring an end to the Syrian war. By extending an invitation to Assad, Arab leaders risk being seen as condoning the practices and policies of the Syrian regime, which have been accused of several human rights violations.
- Strong criticism from the international community.
- Damage to the reputation of Arab leaders.
- Possible sanctions imposed on countries that support or favor Assad’s regime.
Saudi Arabia has announced that it will invite Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to attend the Arab Leaders Summit in Riyadh in order to end regional isolation, a move that comes as a relief to the Assad regime. The Arab Leaders Summit is an annual Summit meeting of Arab leadersman focussed on regional problems and issues.