Syria’s Assad Rejoins Arab League For the First Time in 13 Years

When a devastating earthquake struck in February, President Bashar al-Assad of Syria spotted opportunity in disaster. He called for an end to international sanctions on his country and within days, some were suspended. Other Middle Eastern states sent planeloads of aid and senior officials from those countries soon followed for the first high-level visits in years.

In the three months since, Mr. al-Assad has made a remarkable comeback, going from more than a decade of near-total global isolation after a series of atrocities, to being welcomed back into the Arab fold with virtually no strings attached. And on Friday, he is expected to attend an annual summit of Arab leaders for the first time in 13 years, the most definitive sign yet that he is returning to the region’s embrace.

Mr. Assad was shunned for brutally suppressing his country’s Arab Spring uprising in 2011, which morphed into a civil war that has ground to a standstill, but has still not ended. His government stands…

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This article was written by Vivian Nereim and Raja Abdulrahim and originally published on