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2015 | SJAC, Maybe We Can Reach A Solution - Syrian Perspectives on the Conflict and Local Initiatives for Peace Justice and Reconciliation

To better understand opinions and perceptions — and amplify Syrian voices — the Syria Justice and Accountability Centre (SJAC) commissioned Charney Research to conduct in-depth interviews among a diverse group of Syrians, including Sunnis, Shia, Alawites, and Christians; regime supporters and opponents; and internally displaced persons and refugees. Researchers found that support among Syrians for a broad-based, internationally negotiated settlement to the crisis that existed a year ago has diminished significantly. However, interest for inclusive, local-level negotiations designed to de-escalate the conflict and allow for humanitarian intervention is quite strong. Though Syrians are becoming more polarized as the conflict worsens, many still yearn to cease the fighting and live together again in peace as one nation. Charney concluded that efforts to encourage consideration of community-level efforts to advance the causes of peace, justice, and reconciliation may help bridge the enormous divide between government and opposition supporters — and towards resolution of the conflict. This report looks at the current status of the conflict and possible outcomes. It looks at contemporary (local) halts of the hostilities, negotiations and mediation processes. It also examines what the views of the main actors in the conflict are, and how trust can be rebuild on a local level.