Egyptian Mediation to Stop the Attack on Eastern Ghouta

A fighter from “Jaysh al-Islam” in Hosh Al-Dwahra, Eastern Ghouta – 13 February 2018 (Enab Baladi)

A fighter from “Jaysh al-Islam” in Hosh Al-Dwahra, Eastern Ghouta – 13 February 2018 (Enab Baladi)


Led by the “Syria’s Tomorrow Movement” party, negotiations, under an Egyptian auspices, are conducted to stop the attack on Eastern Ghouta, without arriving at a “positive solution” to stop the military operations and the air raids that are targeting civilians.

Today, on 21 February, pro-regime sources said that the Egyptian mediator in Damascus is trying to solve the crisis of Eastern Ghouta without a ground operation on the part of Assad’s forces.

The sources added that the Syrian regime insists on the exit of the military factions to Northern Syria, while the civilians could stay.

The towns and cities in Eastern Ghouta are suffering an intense bombardment by the Syrian regime and Russia, which killed dozens of civilians in the three past days.

The death toll, due to bombardment, went beyond 250 civilians, according to what medical sources have told Enab Baladi.

Informed sources told Enab Baladi that the negotiations about Eastern Ghouta  are conducted by the Head of the “Syria’s Tomorrow Movement” party, Ahmad Jarba, and the Director of the Political office of “Jaysh al-Islam,” Mohammad Aloush, under an Egyptian auspices on the one hand and the Russian side on the other hand, without reaching a positive solution to stop the attack.

The sources, wishing to be anonymous, said that “Syria’s Tomorrow Movement” party will organize a meeting in the evening, in the light of which matters relating to Ghouta would be clarified.

For his part, Aloush denied the presence of this negotiations and his own participation; he also told Enab Baladi that the “Russians have a similar plan to that of Aleppo while the situation in Eastern Ghouta is different, and destruction would not be its share only.”

International entities, on top of which is the United Nations, are helpless if not complicit, for instead of helping to stop the bloodshed, Staffan de Mistura, UN Special Envoy for Syria, became a spokesperson for the Russians,”  he added.

In 2017, last August, Ghouta joined the “de-escalation” agreement in two stages, after an amalgamation of talks between Russia and “Jaysh al-Islam” and The “al-Rahman Legion,” in which Egypt played a major role as a mediator.

Analysts believe that Egypt’s participation in the Syrian negotiations is a clear message from Russia to Tehran and Ankara, stating that it can change the rules of the game in a manner that suits its agenda and not theirs.

Local councils in Eastern Ghouta addressed the international community, the Security Council and the United Nations to intervene and stop what they described as a “Genocide in Eastern Ghouta.”

At the same time, the UN’s regional humanitarian coordinator for Syria Panos Moumtzis demanded an immediate cessation of the military operations that are targeting civilians on a daily basis, in addition to the need to open humanitarian crossings for critical patients.

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