How world leaders fared in a turbulent year
Updated 1654 GMT (0054 HKT) December 23, 2017
(CNN)It has been a turbulent year for many leaders across the globe, and while some benefited from 2017's geopolitical twists and turns, others suffered a series of setbacks.
CNN's international correspondents give their assessments on which world leaders are up and which are down at the end of 2017, and what might be in store next year.
France's Emmanuel Macron -- UP
2017 was the year that made Macron. At its start, he was a former economy minister making an unlikely presidential bid. But the improbable collapse of France's two mainstream parties -- which had shared power in France for 60 years -- paved his way to victory.
The stars aligned themselves in Macron's favor on the international stage, too. Political turmoil in London, Washington and Berlin, coupled with his own ambitious vision, led Macron to be spoken of as not simply the French President, but as the new leader of the free world. The year ahead looks as though it could be more promising still.
By Melissa Bell
Germany's Angela Merkel -- DOWN
It's been a tough year for Merkel, who first had to repair her relationship with US President Donald Trump and then tackle German elections amid a surge in right-wing populism. Despite Trump's apparent refusal to shake her hand at their first meeting, Merkel has crafted a good working relationship with him.
After that success, Merkel turned her attention to getting re-elected and seemed to be coasting to a September victory. But her party lost more than a million votes to the far-right Alternative for Germany. Merkel remains Chancellor, but she needs to get a working coalition up and running as soon as possible to meet the challenges of 2018.
By Atika Shubert
Syria's Bashar al-Assad -- UP
In 2017, Assad consolidated his hold on Syria's territory, made the best use of the war against ISIS to expand his grip and weathered a brief but symbolic US air assault. He not only remains in power, but looks more likely than ever to stay there until he chooses. The post-ISIS turmoil of Iran's face-off with Saudi Arabia has reduced the prominence of Assad and his alleged war crimes in the region.
He'll have to navigate the threat of Israeli military interventions into Syria to lessen Iran's presence, but Russia's continued backing and his opponents' collapse mean his territorial grip is only going to increase.
By Nick Paton Walsh
Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi -- DOWN
This year marked a fall from grace for Aung San Suu Kyi. The leader of Myanmar's elected government went from being hailed as a democratic hope for southeast Asia to being denounced as an apologist for what the United Nations and the US call ethnic cleansing.
In mid-September, after more than 400,000 Rohingya Muslims fled across Myanmar's border to Bangladesh, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate gave a speech on the crisis during which she said "we want to find out why this exodus is happening." The refugee exodus has since swelled to more than 600,000. But despite the crisis, Suu Kyi continues to enjoy fervent domestic support.