‘Defeating IS takes priority over Assad ouster’ in new Syria peace plan

“…On the surface, the UNSC statement looks like a 50/50 compromise: Russia didn’t veto a text urging a “political transition” in Syria; western powers acknowledged the necessity to fight terror groups opposed to Assad. But according to analysts, a thorough examination of the statement reveals that the UNSC has actually tipped the balance towards Moscow’s initial position on two key elements.

The first of these issues, “fighting terrorism” – which is how Moscow, Damascus, and Tehran have framed the Syrian conflict from the very beginning – has now been put on an equal level with the need for a political transition.”