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Rosemary Bechler is openDemocracy’s Editor.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Call for participants: Syria, Middle East Forum

يبحث موقع openDemocracy عن مشاركين لمنتدى الشرق الأوسط  لسوريا.

openDemocracy is looking for participants for the Middle East Forum for Syria.

الفاعلية النفسية والأمل: مساعدة المجتمعات على معالجة نفسها

يتناول هذا المقال نموذجًا يرتكز على مجالس مستقلة التنظيم تابعة للمعارضة كشريكٍ رئيسي محتمل في تعزيز القدرة على معالجة الصحة العقلية في المجتمعات المتأثرة بالصراع. English

Agency and hope: helping communities healing themselves

When planning mental health services, treating PTSD is what usually comes to mind. What role do local communities play in building resiliency in Syria? عربي

Trump’s Syrian “safe area” is just another wall

Without a true and robust commitment to save lives, Trump’s idea for a safe area in Syria looks more like a death trap.

Syria: Is peace possible if Assad stays?

Whatever the political outcome, transitioning from violence to peace is not just about the removal of violence. How can this future be achieved and who will do this work?

Solution for Syria en route: ‘Democratic Federation of North Syria’

Hediye Yûsîf, Co-Chair of the council of the new political structure, renamed ‘Democratic Federation of North Syria’, explains the thinking and the process behind the initiative.

Lessons from Syria on women's empowerment during conflict

Syrian women will be the pillars of any future democratic process. Their efforts deserve support from national and international actors.

Syrian civil society

The third annual meeting of the Syrian Civil Coalition was held in Beirut on January 27-30 2017. Could a new understanding have come too late?

From Damascus to The Hague: a refugee's journey

A refugee’s journey through physical and political borders, and the difficulties and risks along the perilous route.

Women on the front at Raqqa: an interview with Kimmie Taylor

What is the reality of war like for the women of Rojava as they advance on Raqqa? Kimmie Taylor from Britain is on the frontline and puts us in the picture.

Why sectarianism fails at explaining the conflict in Syria

While sectarianism may be a component, its role as the primary cause of the war remains secondary.

A separation: Syrian asylum seekers in Germany

Rapidly changing asylum policies, plus legal and bureaucratic hurdles mean that many Syrian asylum seekers in Germany are separated from their families for years or even forced apart post-arrival. Gender shapes this experience.

The exiled Syrian actress helping young refugees deal with trauma using theater

Actress Raghad Makhlouf, speaks to Jameela Freitas about how her theatre workshops give young refugees a safe space to express themselves and deal with the stress caused by war and displacement.

With a more enterprising Russia, cards are reshuffled in the Arab world

A new power structure is emerging in the Middle East as Russia uses its intervention in Syria to position itself as an important partner for regional powers as diverse and opposed to each other as Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Israel and Iran.

Syria: grassroots democracy, future prospects (Part II)

Part two of this interview with Joseph Daher explores some of the experiments in grassroots democracy and the possible futures in Syria.

Revolution and counter-revolution in Syria (Part I)

This first part of an interview with Joseph Daher offers an in-depth look at the forces involved in the Syrian revolution, and those fighting against it.

Aleppo's forgotten revolutionaries

Countless icons of the Syrian revolution who struggled for freedom between 2012-2014 have been ignored and erased from history by the western media.

Syria: prospects and solutions

The optimal outcome of the conflict in Syria is for democratic elections to take place and the regime to step down. But what are the real prospects of this happening?

Make Russia great again? Aleppo and a plea from another world

During the last days of December, Russia will host a round of diplomatic talks with Iran and Turkey.

A tribute to Sadek Jalal al ‘Azm

Engaging with Sadek never ceased to be a delight, a charmer who caught you with his sharpness and wit. How often have I wished to freeze that year I spent in Holland. In memoriam.

'We don't want a Charlie Hebdo in Sweden'

In small town Sweden, a Syrian immigrant has tried to bridge the gap between "Swedes" and "newcomers" by organising pioneering cultural events in her local library.

Rojava, where water is twice as expensive as oil

Turkey is now in Jarablus town with Special Forces personnel and heavy weapons including tanks, and making advances enabling it to control a strategic part of the region.

The regional implications of the fall of Aleppo

The lesson Arab autocrats are likely to learn from Syria is simple: under the current international climate the use of severe repression is effective.

Crocodile tears over Aleppo

Preventing genocide is not always successful. But this time, by closing its borders, Europe has ensured that the necessary palliative care is also limited to the minimum.

Fall of Aleppo, the day after

The fall of Aleppo should not restore faith in a war criminal like Assad, whose forces committed crimes against humanity and wrecked the nation to create a vacuum, allowing groups like ISIS to emerge.

Our testimony to death

It is just an image, containing something, a new event; a newsworthy event, but look closely at the image, it resembles an event we have witnessed before, time and time again.

Dangerous journeys: violence against women migrants in Turkey

Syrian women migrants in Turkey face many forms of violence - sexual harassment, forced and early marriage, polygamy and trafficking for sexual exploitation. The perpetrators include soldiers, border officers and migration officers.

Hidden Warfare 3: Special forces

While Britain’s conventional army is being slashed, Britain’s special forces are benefiting from special treatment. Their budget was doubled in last year’s Strategic Defence and Security Review.

Turkey’s Syrian and Iraqi adventures: the underlying message

Turkey is sending a message that its armed forces are still a strong and capable fighting force, despite large-scale purges of officers of the highest ranks.

Trump and climate change: why not talk about threat multipliers?

Discussing climate-linked migration as a “threat” requires adopting the premise that migration is a threat. And perhaps even that migrants themselves are a threat.

Making global citizenship education possible for refugees

Our students, learning about global values, become frustrated that they are unable to experience this world. Learning about diversity, they possess limited opportunities to interact with people from elsewhere.

Syria’s “voice of conscience” has a message for the west

Syrian dissident Yassin Al-Haj Saleh talks about the left and the regime, revolution and hope, Islam and secularism.

Will a No-Fly Zone help the people of Aleppo?

The debate around a no-fly zone in Syria is governed by divisions in the political establishment and opposing views.

Moazzam Begg and The Confession, Part Two.

"Whatever you want to think about Moazzam Begg...  the film demands that you recognize that the rule of law, that quintessential British value, has not been exercised in our time."

Avoiding a precedent in Syria and the Balkanisation of the Middle East

A key part of resolving the Syrian conflict lies in establishing a more coherent military-diplomatic dynamic and in post-conflict planning, and the solution is heavily dependent on perceptions.

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