Rights groups say the world has failed Syria as war leaves 220,000 people dead and half the country’s people displaced.
Diplomacy remains stalled , with two rounds of peace talks achieving no progress and even a proposal for a local ceasefire in Aleppo fizzling out.
The conflict began as an anti-government uprising, with protesters taking to the streets on March 15, 2011, inspired by similar revolts in Egypt and Tunisia.
But a government crackdown on the demonstrations prompted a militarisation of the uprising and its descent into today’s multi-front conflict…
US Secretary of State John Kerry says he wants to «re-ignite» negotiations with President Bashar al-Assad to end the conflict in Syria.
Speaking as the war enters its fifth year, Mr Kerry said it was «one of the worst tragedies any of us have seen».
He said the international community was upping pressure on Syria’s regime to hold new peace talks, saying «we have to negotiate in the end» with Mr Assad.
The conflict in Syria has entered its fifth year, a grim anniversary in what has become the worst humanitarian crisis of our time.
It began on March 15, 2011 when the Syrian government met mostly peaceful protests in several towns and cities with gunfire, beatings and arrest. Eventually, the once-peaceful opposition acquired weapons, soldiers defected, and the uprising transformed into a grinding civil war with ugly sectarian dimensions that has sucked in countries across the region and further afield. An estimated 220,000 people have now been killed and life expectancy has dropped two decades to 55 years, according to the United Nations. 3.9 million people have fled the country, and a further 7.6 million have been internally displaced.
Syria’s economy has collapsed and 80 percent of the country now lives in poverty. Half of all school-aged children haven’t attended school in three years. The country has literally gone dark, with 83 percent of electricity supplies are now cut.
- Syria’s war: 80% in poverty, life expectancy cut by 20 years, $200bn lost. A United Nations Development Programme-backed report paints a devastating picture of a country after four years of war.
- Satellites capture how the lights have gone out in Syria. Bombings and huge numbers of people fleeing have cut night-time light levels by 83% since 2011, with places such as Aleppo almost entirely dark.
- The worst place in the world? Aleppo in ruins after four years of Syria war.
- War in Syria: how my life has changed. Six Syrians from across the divide, from rebel officers to regime supporters give their accounts of the last four years.
- The fate of medical staff on the front line of the conflict underlines the brutality of the civil war with 599 medical personnel among the casualties. Medics describes life on the front line.
- Dr Entabi, A British-Syrian eye consultant, describes one of his regular stints at a Syrian field hospitals. “There is blood everywhere: maimed bodies, dismembered bodies of people, one hand is there, one leg is there,” he said.
- The acid attack victim who is one of Syria’s lucky ones. Andi is among the minority of injured Syrians to have received treatment for her physical scars – but the crippling emotional wounds remain
- Syria conflict: share your stories