The decision by Egypt to recall its ambassador in Damascus is likely to lead to more international isolation for the Syrian administration, analysts said on Monday.
The Egyptian decision, meant to increase pressure on the already embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as growing violence in Syria have raised fears of a civil war, came days after Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr condemned the continuous violence in Syria.
Amr stressed Cairo's support for the Arab initiative, as well as its refusal for military intervention in Syria. But he also said that "It's time for change in Syria before the situation gets worse to affect the regional situation and stability."
"The decision expressed Egypt's dissatisfaction regarding the violence escalation against the Syrians who asked for their legitimate rights," said Hussein Derag, Egypt's former ambassador to Lebanon.
Countries including the Gulf states, Tunisia and Libya have already decided to withdraw their ambassadors to Syria and expel Syrian envoys.
Egyptian People's Assembly (lower house of parliament) decided earlier this month to freeze its relations with the Syrian parliament due to the violence in Syria.
Demonstrations were also held in Cairo outside the Syrian embassy and the Arab League (AL) headquarters, asking Assad to leave power and the Egyptian government to take more serious steps.
According to Derag, Egypt has been stuck between helping the Syrian people achieve their aspirations and avoiding foreign intervention.
Although Egypt will keep its other embassy staff in the Syrian capital, the withdrawal of ambassador Shouki Ismail indicates the downgrading of diplomatic levels between the two countries.
Derag said the decision was hard for Egypt, because Egypt and Syria had enjoyed special historic and geographic relations as they were once unified during the era of Gamal Abdul Nasser in late 1950s and both adopted so-called Arab nationalism.
The decision was a political message rather than a real cutting of the diplomatic ties, Derag said, adding that "but it will accumulate more pressure over Bashar (al-Assad) and increase the sense of international isolation."
The Syrian government has blamed the unrest in Syria on plots by terrorists and foreign-backed armed gangs, and said more than 2, 000 army and security personnel were killed during the 11-month unrest. The United Nation recently put the death toll in the Syrian unrest at around 6,000.
There is no doubt that the Syrian administration has put itself in an embarrassing situation with his people, the Arab countries and the whole world, said Talaat Hamid, assistant general secretary of the Arab parliament, an AL-affiliated body.
Egypt is under pressure to protect the lives of Syrians and to respond to their demands, but it is also expected to prevent the Libyan scenario to repeat in Syria, Hamid said.
Meanwhile, Helmy Sharawy, chief of the Cairo-based Arab Studies Center, said that Egypt had "tried to keep a link with the (Syrian) government for negotiations, but the situation in Syria led to the current decision."