Yasser Al-Zayyat/AFP/Getty Images
A Kuwaiti demonstrator holds a sign which reads in Arabic "The Arab people want the fall of Bashar [al-Assad]" as he steps on a defaced portrait of Russian President Dmitry Medvedev during a protest in front of the Russian embassy in Kuwait City on February 6, 2012.
Since Saturday, Syrian forces have been shelling the city of Homs, slamming residential areas and a makeshift medical clinic. Over 200 people were killed Saturday, and dozens more in the days since. This comes after 11 months of violence perpetrated by President Bashar Assad’s regime. Last March, peaceful protesters rose up to voice their anger against decades of Assad family rule, and since then violence has escalated between armed rebels and regime forces. The United Nations estimates that well over 5,400 people have been killed.
Last week, a U.N. resolution to intervene in Syria was voted down by its allies, Russia and China. In a dramatic move, the United States has made the decision to close its embassy in Syria and withdraw its ambassadors. Likewise, Britain has recalled its ambassador to Damascus. President Obama has called for Assad to step down, but as yet has ruled out military intervention. British Foreign Secretary William Hague has called Assad’s regime “doomed” and “murdering,” and says “there is no way it can recover its international credibility.What’s next for Syria?
Nick Blanford, Foreign Correspondent based in Beirut for The Christian Science Monitor