Syria Timeline

The following is a list of events that have shaped the course that led to Syria’s present day status. Naturally, not all dates are included in this timeline but rather an outline of major political, economical, and world occurrences. For a more detailed timeline visit BBC News.

The country of Syria and the national flag. Photo courtesy of Emily Blackshear.

The country of Syria and the national flag. Photo courtesy of Emily Blackshear.

1919 June: Election for a Syrian National Congress are held.

1920 March: The new National Congress names Emir Feisal king of Syria.

1920 June: Syria-Lebanon are placed under French mandate forcing Feisal to flee the region.

1936: France recognizes Syria but maintains their military and economic dominance in the country.

1940: During World War II, Syria becomes controlled by the Axis powers when France falls to Germany.

1946: The French mandate has been ended and the last of the French troops withdraw.

1947: The Arab Socialist Baath Party is founded

1958: Syria joins the United Arab Republic (UAR) forcing all political parties to dissolve.

1963: Unsatisfied with Egyptian dominance of the UAR, Syrian military officials seize power placing a Baath member in power.

1966: Baath regime is overthrown.

1971 March: Assad is elected president for a seven year term.

1973: Syria and Egypt go to war with Israel.

1974: Syria and Israel sign a peace agreement.

1980: Islamic revolution occurs in Iran. Assad makes clear his nation’s adherence to Islam. Muslim Brotherhood member attempts to assassinate Assad. The Iran-Iraq war begins and Syria back Iran.

1982: In the city of Hama, the Muslim Brotherhood rises against Assad but are suppressed by the Syrian military. Thousands of civilians are killed.

1990: Iraq invades Kuwait and Syria joins US-led coalition against Iraq leading to improved relations with Egypt and the US.

2000 June: After the death of Assad his son, Bashar takes his place.

2000 November: The new President, Bashar Assad calls for the release of 600 political prisoners.

2001: The Muslim Brotherhood says it will resume political activity. It had been 20 years since its original leaders were forced to leave Syria.

2002: Syria is included on a list composed by Senior US officials as “axis of evil”.

2003: Syria denies US accusations that it is acquiring weapons of mass destruction.

2006 September: the US Embassy in Damascus is attacked.

2007: Israel carries out an air strike on a section in northern Syria that is said to be a nuclear facility under construction.

2010 May: US renews sanctions against Syria due to their support of terrorist groups.

2011 March: Protests in Damascus demand for the release of political prisoners. Security forces shoot protestors triggering days of violence that spread nationwide over the following months.

2011 July: President Assad removes the governor of Hama after mass demonstration. He sends in troops to restore power resulting in mass casualties.

2011: Suicide bombers in Damascus kill 44. This is the beginning of large blasts in the capital that carry on into the summer. Opposition accuse government of staging these attacks.

2012 May: The UN Security Council condems the Syrian overnment’s use of weaponry and troops that killed civilians in Houla. Countries such as France, the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, Canada, and Australia expel Syrian diplomats from their borders in protest.

2012 August: President Obama wars the Syrian government that the use of chemical weapons on civilians would be cause for US intervention.

2013 April: US and Britain demand an investigation into reports of government forces using chemical weapons on civilians.

2013 August: Pro-Assad forces are accused of using chemicals weapons in an attack that kill 300 civilians new Damascus. The Syrian government in turn blames the rebels.

2013 September: President Obama postpones military action after Russia suggests a plan to put weapons under international control thus greatly reducing the large amounts of violence.