As the crisis in Syria intensifies, so too does the international community's involvement there.
More than 60 countries calling themselves "Friends of Syria" are holding a series of meetings to discuss the path forward for the international community. The name "Friends of Syria" is a bit of a misnomer, however, as they could better be described as "Opponents of the Assad Regime," even though not all of them are calling for the Syrian leader to step down right now.
There is no doubt that an overwhelming majority of countries in the world are in favor of the immediate end of the current Syrian regime, but Syrian President Bashar al-Assad still has some friends who are trying to influence the outcome of the current crisis.
Complete Coverage of the Syrian Conflict
While many countries, both in the Middle East and beyond, will be affected by what happens in Syria there is a small group of countries with special interests and outsized influence on the crisis. The key players in Syria are the U.S., Israel, Turkey, Russia, Iran and the Arab League. While there are countless others - China, France, Britain, and Iraq, to name a few - who will be involved in and affected by the crisis moving forward, those five appear at this time to be the ones who will have the largest interest and involvement.