Syria’s misery mounts and still the world desperately searches for a solution to the conflict. But the road to peace has so far led only to frustration. Here are some key dates in the international effort.
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Syrian government troops open fire on crowds of people protesting the regime of Bashar al-Assad. The upheaval spirals into armed conflict as members of the military defect to join the demonstrators.
The Action Group for Syria – which includes the U.S., Russia, the Arab League and other world powers – agrees to a peace plan. The Geneva communiqué sets out a blueprint to end the fighting and create a political settlement. The government and opposition are urged to follow it to negotiate a peace.
The Red Cross declares the conflict a civil war, crossing an important symbolic threshold with implications for potential war crimes prosecutions in the future. As the fighting continues, the death toll continues to rise.
A second round of talks is held. Discussion grinds to a halt when the Syrian regime refuses to discuss opposition demands for an interim government to be formed, says UN mediator Lakhdar Brahimi. "I apologize that these two rounds have not come out with very much," he adds.