Middle East

Syrian conflict: Your questions to Jeremy Bowen

Jeremy Bowen answers your questions
Image caption Jeremy Bowen answers your questions at Broadcasting House #AskBBCJeremy

In March 2011 protests began in Syria against Bashar Al Assad's government.

As Syrians mark two years since the start of the uprising BBC Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen @BowenBBC answered your questions in a live Twitter Q&A.

Here is an edited version of the session which was held on Friday 15 March.

Question from @wooddt99 on Twitter: Where is Assad getting his money from to buy arms & pay his troops? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: His best sources of money come from Iran and Russia. Syrian economy is barely functioning #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @moizshawalchi on Twitter: What's the ultimate solution to the Syria conflict? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Syrians have to decide. can't be imposed by foreigners. at the moment it's all about the logic of war -- who's strongest #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @Kingsam_Soyinka on Twitter: Is there any sign of deep divisions among the different rebel groups fighting against Assad? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Rebels share common goal of toppling Assad. The real arguments will start if they do that. #AskBBCJeremy

Question from Matt in Sheffield by email: If we start supplying weapons to the opposition, what would the Russian reaction be? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Russians have already said arms supplies to rebels would breach international law. #AskBBCJeremy

Question from Alex in Brighton by email: How much of the Syrian population is for and against Assad? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: no opinion polls in Syria. Assad has core support from Alawites and some other minorities, most armed rebels Sunnis #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @RossJHarwood on Twitter: Could Assad still be offered a way out by the likes of Russia and do you think he'd ever take it? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Assad says he will die in Syria. Right now I guess he's feeling strong, still there after 2 years unlike some ME rulers #AskBBCJeremy

Question from Rachel in Sheffield by email: Are 'both sides' looking after the historic sites e.g. Palmyera? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Syrians very proud of their heritage. But where there's fighting, it's been knocked about badly. #AskBBCJeremy

Question from Louis by email: Do you think the conflict in Syria will last as long as the civil war in Lebanon? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Hope not for everyone's sake. But Syria could be facing years of fighting and warlordism. Lebanon not bad comparison #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @jennobuko on Twitter: Do you think the Arab League should reinstate Syria, as requested by Lebanon? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Arab League gave seat to rebels, if they can form 'govt', as political act. unlikely they will change their minds #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @reporterboy on Twitter: How true is the line from Assad/West that the revolution's been "hijacked" by extremists #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: In today's mideast, jihadists bound to join in, and are strong fighters. but their worldview not shared by most Syrians. #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @Woolfy210 on Twitter: Will Barack Obama's visit to Israel and the West Bank yield any significant change in the peace process? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Doubt it very much. Would be gobsmacked if it did. right now there is no peace process #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @jillianmoody on Twitter: What's it like day to day in Syria's cities? Are the schools still open? Are people still working? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: In war torn areas, normal life in tatters. In other places, eg central Damascus you still see kids going to school #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @apemalo on Twitter: Is there danger in Lebanon if Assad falls? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Whether Assad goes or stays, Lebanon has too many connections with Syria not to be affected deeply by the war #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @MoeManOreo on Twitter: What's your opinion on the situation in Egypt now? Do you think Morsi is doing what he's supposed to? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Egypt has huge econ and polit probs and Morsi might do better if he remembers he didnt have landslide win#AskBBCJeremy

Question from @MattMattwallis on Twitter: In 1957 Nasser ended the Syrian crisis. Is the current lack of a strong Middle East leader a factor? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Could argue Nasser made matters worse. Dominant Arab leaders have not so far made lives better for most of their people #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @AllThatChas on Twitter: What do you like most about Israeli culture/food? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: love the food in Jerusalem, with its tastes of all the Middle East and Europe. thanks to @ottolenghi trying to cook it #AskBBCJeremy

Question from @paulmoore37 on Twitter: On a lighter note, score for Wales v England rugby? #AskBBCJeremy

Jeremy answers: Don't care as long as Wales win, preferably by 8 clear points! #AskBBCJeremy

You can follow Jeremy on Twitter: https://twitter.com/BowenBBC