"And I have found both freedom and safety in my madness, the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us. But let me not be too proud of my safety. Even a Thief in a jail is safe from another thief. "

Khalil Gibran (How I Became a Madman)

Lübnan Marunîleri / Yasin Atlıoğlu


Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Syrian victories thanks to Iran, BRICS states: Syria PM- PRESS TV

Syrian Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi says Damascus continues to achieve diplomatic “victories” thanks to the support of “friendly” states, particularly Iran and the BRICS group of emerging powers.

“Relations between Syria and Iran are strong and tough, as well as ties with other friendly countries including Russia and the BRIC countries (China, Russia, India and Brazil),” said the Syrian prime minister on Tuesday.

The Syrian premier also hailed Moscow and Beijing’s decision to block three UN Security Council resolutions proposed by western nations in an attempt to pressure the Syrian government and said, “With such stands, Syria won diplomatic victories in the previous period.”

Mansour: Syria planes over Lebanon 'friendly'- The Daily Star

BEIRUT: Caretaker Foreign Affairs Minister Adnan Mansour defended in remarks published Tuesday Syria’s violation of Lebanon’s airspace, saying the issue should be resolved on the basis of security agreements between the two countries.

"The Syrian planes are friendly and not hostile and we should be aware of the facts of what happened,” Mansour told Al-Joumhouria.

"Therefore, we are waiting for the Army leadership to give us details and available information so we know how to deal with this issue on the basis of bilateral security agreements between the sisterly states,” he adde

Syria crisis: Ships return as chemical removal slips- BBC News

Norwegian and Danish ships waiting to remove Syria's chemical weapons are returning to port in Cyprus, signalling a key deadline will not be met.
Bad weather, shifting battle lines and road closures are being blamed for the delay.
The international mission is waiting for Syria's most dangerous chemicals to be transported to the port in Latakia.
The deadline is the first milestone of a deal to rid Syria of its chemical weapons arsenal by the middle of 2014.

Turkey's foreign minister meets Lebanese politicians for Syria talk- Hurriyet Daily News

Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu met Lebanese Progressive Socialist Party Leader Walid Jumblatt and Social Affairs Minister Wael Abou Faour Dec. 31 for talks on the Syrian crisis, the upcoming Geneva II peace conference and bilateral relations.

Jumblatt is also the most prominent leader of Lebanon's Druze community.

Rocket sets bus afire, killing 25, Syrian opposition group says- CNN

(CNN) -- At least 25 people were killed Tuesday when a rocket struck a bus in Syria's commercial capital of Aleppo, the opposition Aleppo Media Center said.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Michel Suleiman, I Implore You … Just Leave- Al-Akhbar

What does Michel Suleiman expect?
To thank him, for example? To hold a million-person march to the presidential palace to implore him to remain president until judgment day? To hold up banners and giant pictures of him, the ruler of the Arabian Peninsula, or the racist who became France's president? To kneel on the ground in gratitude to this handout?
What are you doing, Suleiman? Were you saying yesterday, "Baabda is now Saudi?"
Are you now the spokesperson of a summit which brings together the two biggest enemies of Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, and Iraq?
Do you believe you succeeded, when everyone else failed, to convince Saudi and France to provide finances and weapons for the army to confront aggressors against the country's sovereignty and the dignity of its people?
Do you believe, and do you want us to believe, that the Saudi-French charity organization just realized the Lebanese army's need for support and arms to maintain Lebanon's independence?

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Israel fires about 20 shells into Lebanon- Al-Akhbar

Israeli occupation forces fired about 20 shells into Lebanon Sunday morning, causing no casualties or material damage, sources on both sides said.
The attack was apparently prompted after an unknown group launched a rocket into occupied Palestine. Israel said five rockets were launched from Lebanon, but only one or two made it across the border.
"About 20 shells from Israeli territory have struck the border region of Arqub after the launch of rockets against Israel this morning," a Lebanese security official told AFP.

In message to Pope, Syrian President says he's ready for peace talks- CNN

(CNN) -- In a message to Pope Francis, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said his government is ready to participate in next month's peace talks but noted outside countries must stop supporting what he called terrorist groups in the country's civil war, Syria's state-run news agency said Saturday.

Army operations against terrorists continue in several areas- SANA

Provinces, (SANA)-The Syrian Arab Army on Saturday carried out successful military operations against armed terrorist groups, killing a number of terrorists, some of them non-Syrians, and injuring scores others.

In Homs towns, the army destroyed a number of cars for terrorists, including weapons and munitions, killing the terrorists who were inside the cars.

A military source told SANA that members of an armed group were killed at al-Hamadiya neighborhood in the old city, while another army unit eliminated dens of terrorists in Job al-Jarah, al-Khalidiya and Tal Dhab.

The source added that an army unit killed 20 terrorists in al-Saan area in Homs countryside.

Dozens of terrorists killed in Aleppo Province
Army units killed many and injured others of terrorists who attempted to attack residents of Salah-Eddin neighborhood, as they also destroyed terrorists' gatherings and dens in several areas of Aleppo Province.

A military source said that army units destroyed terrorists' dens with all weapons and ammunition inside in the villages and towns of Mayer, Hreitan, Handarat, al-Wdeihi, Azzan, Maaret al-Arteeq, al-Meselmiyeh and Khan al-Asal.

The source pointed out that dozens of terrorists were either killed or injured during military operations against armed terrorist groups' hideouts in the surrounding area of the Central Prison and Kafarnaha, in addition to destroying cars loaded with weapons and ammunition on Atareb road and in Arom al-Kubra, Arom al-Soughra, al-Zyarat villages and to the south of Andan area.

In the city of Aleppo, an army unit clashed with an armed terrorist group that attempted to infiltrate into al-Hashkal in Salah-Eddin neighborhood, killing many of its members and injuring others.

In the meantime, tens of terrorists were killed and many others got wounded in Bustan al-Qaser, al-Ansari, Karem Myassar, al-Jazmati, al-Sheikh Najjar and al-Sheikh Zyad, in addition to destroying their weapons.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Future Movement and March 14: Hezbollah Killed Shatah- Al-Akhbar

“There shall be no dialogue and no government formed with the killers.” This was the gist of the March 14 Alliance meeting that convened in the home of former Prime Minister Saad Hariri in Wadi Abu Jamil. The attendees did not hesitate to issue thinly veiled accusations of Hezbollah being behind the December 27 assassination of Mohammed Shatah.
This time, unlike all previous times, Mohammed Shatah was not the first to arrive at Saad Hariri’s home in Wadi Abu Jamil. The March 14 alliance was to convene at Hariri’s home to follow up on the recommendations made in the Tripoli Declaration – which had appealed for reconciliation in the northern city of Tripoli but also carried implicit calls for a political boycott of Hezbollah. Instead, Shatah’s life was taken treacherously by a car bomb planted along his route.

Syria: Druze rebels deny “forced conversion” reports- Asharq Al-Awsat

Beirut, Asharq Al-Awsat—Syrian Druze rebel leaders have denied media reports that Islamist rebels are forcing Syrian Druze villages in Idlib to publicly embrace Islam. Earlier this week, The Times of Israel reported that “Al-Qaeda fighters in Syria forced residents of 14 Druze villages located in an isolated area to convert to Islam,” with this report later being picked up by international media.
In exclusive comments to Asharq Al-Awsat, a spokesman for the rebel Sweida Revolutionary Military Council, Amer Shafiq, denied the reports that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) was forcing members of the Syrian Druze community to proclaim their Islamic identity. He said: “No Druze has been forced to proclaim any faith that contradicts his religious convictions.”
The Druze sect is an offshoot of Ismailism, itself a branch of Shia Islam. Although Druze do proclaim the shahada—the central tenet of Islam that there is no God but God and Muhammad is his messenger—it is usually only after many years when they feel they have reached an esoteric understanding of its meaning. Therefore many Muslims question their status, as the sect incorporates some beliefs not traditionally found in Islam.

Syria conflict: Strike on Aleppo market 'kills 21'- BBC News

A Syrian government airstrike on a crowded market in the northern city of Aleppo has killed at least 21 people, activists say.
Videos uploaded by activists showed extensive damage to the market and corpses being pulled from cars.
Many more were reported wounded in the strike.
Government forces are reported to have killed about 400 people since beginning an aerial offensive in and around Aleppo two weeks ago.

Zemreyn Köyü Ordunun Elinde- SANA Türkçe

DERA – Vatan koruyucuları ordu birliklerimiz Dera iline tabi Sanamayn kırsalına düşen Zemreyn Köyünde Nusra Cepheli teröristleri tamamen etkisiz hale getirip köyde vatandaşların can ve mal güvenliğini sağladı.

Askeri bir kaynak yaptığı açıklamada; köyde Nusra Cephesinden yüksek sayıda teröristin ölü ve yaralı olarak ele geçirildiklerini belirtirken, aralarında bir çok elebaşı ve çok sayıda yabancı uyruklu teröristlerin bulunduğuna dikkat çekti.

Media of Resistance against War on Syria" Forum kicks off in Damascus- SANA

Damascus, (SANA) – Activities of the "Media of Resistance against War on Syria" Forum kicked off on Saturday with the participation of 37 media institutions from Islamic countries at Dama Rose Hotel in Damascus.

The two-day forum will discuss means of developing Islamic media outlets and coordination among them in light of the ongoing events in Syria.

Minister of Information, Omran al-Zoubi, stressed the importance of mobilizing all capabilities of the national media outlets and friendly media outlets to get engaged in the war alongside the Syrian Arab army.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Heavy explosion in downtown Beirut kills former govt minister- RT

A large explosion has shaken the downtown area of the Lebanese capital, killing former government minister Mohammed Shattah. Lebanese television showed footage of dead bodies lying near the wreckage.
At least 5 people were killed in the explosion that went off just a few hundred meters from the parliament building and other official government headquarters, said Reuters, citing security sources.

Beirut blast kills Sunni ex-minister Mohamad Chatah- BBC News

The former Lebanese Finance Minister Mohamad Chatah has been assassinated in a big bomb blast in central Beirut.
He was an adviser to the former Prime Minister Saad Hariri, a Sunni Muslim.
Four others were also killed in the suspected car bombing near government offices and the parliament. At least 50 people were injured.
The Syrian war has increased Lebanon's Sunni-Shia tensions. Lebanon's Shia Hezbollah movement is helping Syria's President Bashar al-Assad.
President Assad comes from the Alawite sect, a heterodox offshoot of Shia Islam.
The Beirut blast damaged several buildings near the Phoenicia Hotel and set several cars ablaze.

Lebanon's Chatah -- friend of U.S., enemy of Assad, Hezbollah -- killed- CNN

Beirut, Lebanon (CNN) -- Mohamad Chatah, a former Lebanese minister of finance and ambassador to the United States, was killed Friday when a car bomb struck his convoy in downtown Beirut, Lebanon's National News Agency reported.

Al-Moallem: Geneva Conference should focus on combating terrorism- SANA

Damascus, (SANA) –Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign and Expatriates Minister, Walid al-Moallem, discussed on Thursday with Indian Acting Assistant Minister of External Affairs, Sandeep Kumar, means of enhancing the bilateral relations and the efforts exerted for holding the international conference on Syria, in Geneva.

Minister al-Moallem explained the war launched by the armed terrorist groups, whose members came from over 80 countries, on Syria, adding, "Therefore, Geneva conference should focus on combating terrorism and compelling the countries which are supporting these groups to stop funding, arming and hosting these groups because ending terrorism in Syria is the basis for the success of any political solution."

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Russian firm signs 25-year energy deal with Syria- Los Angeles Times

AMMAN, Jordan -- The Syrian government has signed a joint development agreement with a Russian energy company to explore for oil in the Middle Eastern country's territorial waters off the Mediterranean coast, according to SANA, the Syrian state news agency.

The 25-year deal with SoyuzNefteGaz offers a badly needed source of cash to the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad and suggests that Russia has confidence in the regime's ability to survive Syria's civil war -- with or without Assad.


Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Petroleum Ministry signs contract with Russian company for offshore oil production- SANA

Damascus, (SANA) – The Syrian Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources signed the "Amrit" contract with Russian company Soyuzneftegaz for offshore oil drilling, development and production in block no. 2 of Syria's territorial waters.

The contracts covers oil exploration in the area between Tartous city and Banyas city at a depth of 70 kilometers, covering an overall area of 2,190 square kilometers.

The contract stipulates for beginning with surveys in the area and preparing studies to pinpoint potential drilling sites, with this stage costing over USD 15 million.

The second stage will involve drilling at least one test well and it will cost over USD 75 million, and if the operations are successful, the company will carry out further drilling, development and production operations.

The contract also includes benefits such as training staff at the Syrian General Establishment of Petroleum to create a qualified Syrian workforce.

Pope Francis urges aid access to Syria in Christmas speech- BBC News

Pope Francis has used his first Christmas Day address to urge access for humanitarian aid in Syria.
He told thousands of pilgrims in St Peter's Square in the Vatican to pray for a peaceful end to violence in Syria and other conflict zones.
The Argentine Pope also said tragic incidents involving migrants trying to reach Europe should not be repeated.
Christians around the world are celebrating Christmas, which marks the birth of Jesus Christ in Bethlehem.

Syria's Assad 'has secret Iraq oil lifeline'- Al-Jazeera

The Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad has received substantial imports of Iraqi crude oil from an Egyptian port in the last nine months, shipping and payments documents show, part of an under-the-radar trade that has kept his military running despite Western sanctions.

Assad's government has been blacklisted by Western powers for its role in the two-and-a-half year civil war, forcing Damascus to rely on strategic ally Iran as its main supplier of crude oil.

An exclusive Reuters examination based on previously undisclosed commercial documents about Syrian oil purchases shows however that Iran is no longer acting alone.

Syria signs oil exploration deal with Russian firm- CTV News

BEIRUT — Syria's state news agency says the oil ministry has signed a deal with Russian oil and gas company Soyuzneftegaz to explore in the Mediterranean Sea.

SANA's report Wednesday did not say where the deal was signed, though it said the exploration will take place off the Syrian coast.

Earlier this year, Syrian Oil Minister Suleiman Abbas discussed with the ambassadors of China and Russia the possibility of exploring for oil and gas off Syria's Mediterranean coast.


The taxi pulled up to the curb near Bab Touma, and it was clear, even before it came to a halt, that this place, in the Christian quarter of Damascus and one of the oldest parts of the city, was not the same as it had been in the late summer of 2011, just a few months into the uprising, when I was last here. But then, why would it be?
That Syria is gone, replaced by a country of shards. No corner of this ancient land is untouched by the war, now almost three years old. It has left over a hundred and twenty thousand dead, at least half a million wounded, and displaced close to a third of the population. It’s most obvious in the northern belt bordering Turkey, seeping south and east toward the Iraqi border, where many towns and villages have been pulverized by regime airstrikes and artillery, and where even colors seem to have died. Gray, red and black predominate: the mounds of gray rubble that were once homes, the red of so much blood spilled, the black Islamist banners of many rebel units, flying alongside or instead of the more secular three-starred revolutionary flag.

Iraq closes border with ally Syria- Al-Arabiya

Iraq ordered on Tuesday the closure of its border with Syria as the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is conducting a massive military operation hunting for al-Qaeda and militant hideouts in the country’s western desert.
Iraq’s Prime Minister Maliki has been a strong supporter of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and reports suggestedthat his government was facilitating the transfer of Iranian arms to Syria.
But as Iraq began to feel the spillover of the Syrian violence, with many Jihadists returning back from Syrian well-armed and trained and carrying out deadly attacks across Iraq, Maliki appeared obliged to revise his approach to the crisis in Syria.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

500’den Fazla Mescit, 60’tan Fazla Kilise Hasar Gördü- SANA Türkçe

BEYRUT – Antakya ve Tüm Doğu Melkite Rum Katolikler Patriği III. Grigorios Lahham; Suriye'deki tekfirci terör gruplarının istisnasız tüm Suriyelileri hedef aldığını belirtti.

Lübnanlı el Ahbar Gazetesinin dün yayınladığı açıklamalarında Patrik Lahham; Suriye halkının tüm bileşenleri ve kesimleriyle model teşkil edecek kardeşlik ve barışçıl ortak yaşama sahip olduklarını ifade etti.

Patrik Lahham; tekfirci ve kiralık teröristlerin son olarak Şam kırsalı Adra işçi Konutlarında işledikleri katliamlara dikkat çekerek bu bölgede istisnasız tüm halk bileşenlerinin teröristlere hedef olduklarına işaret etti.

Suriye toplumunun İstisnasız tüm bileşenlerinin terör eylemleri neticesinde tanık olduğu acılara ışık tutan Lahham; terör eylemleri neticesinde tehcir edilen Suriyelilerin genelinin Müslüman olduklarına vurgu yaptı.

Lahham terör eylemleri neticesinde 500 mescidin yanı sıra yaklaşık 60 kilisenin hasar gördüğünü, bunun da terör grupları için her şeyin ve herkesin hedef olduğunu kanıtladığını söyledi.

Russian battleships to escort Syrian chemical weapons - military source- RT

Russia’s naval joint force in the Mediterranean will be escorting ships with chemical weapons once they leave Syria, said a top official at the Russian Chief of Staff, according to the RIA news agency.
According to the latest reports, Russia’s task force in the Mediterranean consists of five battleships: the nuclear-powered missile cruiser, ‘Pyotr Veliky’, the missile destroyer ‘Smetlivy’ and three large landing craft carriers, ‘Yamal,’ ‘Filchenkov,’ and ‘Pobeditel.’
"The decision to provide a ship for the precise task will be taken later, on the basis of the tactical situation in the Mediterranean sea. This decision will be made by the head of the General Staff after a report from the chief commander of Russia's Navy," the military official told RIA.
Earlier the UN mission supervising the dismantling of Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal expressed concern over security risks posed by the continued fighting in Syria.

Suriye'ye ilaç kolisi ve Bond çantayla bomba sevkiyatı- Bugün

Adana ve Mersin’de güvenlik güçleri Suriye’ye ilginç yollarla götürülmek istenen bomba ekipmanlarını ele geçirdi.

Bomba düzenekleri, Adana Şakirpaşa Havalimanı’nda ilaç kolisinden,  Mersin’de ise TIR dorsesindeki 4 Bond çantadan çıktı.

Adana Şakir Paşa Havalimanı ilginç bir operasyona sahne oldu. Gümrük Muhafaza ekiplerinin şüphelenerek arama yaptığı ilaç kolisiyle ilgili soruşturmada iki Türk gözaltına alındı. Gizli tutulan baskın 2 Kasım saat 17. 40 sıralarında havalimanının dış hatlarına gelen yolcu gümrük kısmında düzenlendi. Suudi Arabistan’dan Suriye’ye gönderilen sözde ilaçyardımı kolisinden 239 adet bomba yapımında kullanılan uzaktan kumanda düzeneği ele geçirildi.

Syria: ISIS Imposes ‘Sharia’ on Idlib’s Druze- Al-Akhbar

In Syria’s Idlib, it is no longer enough to have Mohammad as a prophet to be considered a Muslim. Though Druze are officially acknowledged as Muslims in Syria, Lebanon, and Saudi Arabia, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has now compelled Idlib’s Druze to announce their conversion to Islam, or else.
Druze in Syria’s northernmost district of Idlib didn’t wait for al-Nusra Front and ISIS to become stronger before announcing their neutrality. As a minority of about 30,000 people living in poor villages, the Druze felt it necessary to do so. The 14 Druze villages host about 50,000 refugees, both opposition and loyalist, who have fled clashes in neighboring towns.
Yesterday, a story titled “18 Druze villages announce their conversion to Islam in Idlib” was posted on Saudi websites. Druze officials in Lebanon and Syria refused to comment, not only to preserve secrecy, but also because it was hard for them to connect with people in the district due to phone network outages. However, these officials realize that the Druze in Idlib are in a tough situation.
Lebanese MP Talal Arslan was the only one to comment. He found the incident unusual, telling Al-Akhbar, “Druze, like other Muslim sects, believe in the message of our Prophet Mohammad.”

A Grim Christmas for Those Driven From Syria’s Maalula- Jakarta Global

After fleeing a rebel assault on the historic Syrian town of Maalula, hundreds of Christian families sheltering in Damascus are preparing for a bleak Christmas away from home.
The picturesque hamlet — where residents still speak the ancient Aramaic of Jesus Christ — was a symbol of the long Christian presence in Syria’s ethnic and religious mosaic, now shattered by war.
The residents of Maalula are among the millions of Syrians displaced by a war that shows no sign of ending, and what should be a joyful holiday season is instead the latest painful reminder of all that has been lost.
“The most beautiful gift I could possibly receive for Christmas would be to return to Maalula,” whispered Hneineh Taalab, who fled in early September after jihadist fighters entered the town and is now sheltering at a Damascus convent.

Halep'te İslami Cephe ile El Kaide omuz omuza- Sol Haber

Nusra Cephesi, İslami Cephe ve Fecr el-Şam Halep'teki ünlü el-Kındi hastanesine büyük bir saldırı başlattılar.
Üçlü tarafından kurulan "birleşik taktik operasyonlar odası - Tek Yürek" tarafından yapılan açıklamada, üç Selefi çetenin "Nusayri ordusu"nun el-Kındi'ye ulaşarak Halep'in kuzeyindeki Merkez Cezaevi yakınlarında "tuzağa düşen" askerlerinin üzerindeki kuşatmayı kırma girişimine karşı hastaneye saldırı başlattığı belirtildi.
4 Aralık günü binaya girmek isteyen cihatçıların zırhlı bir aracı yakınlarda patlattığını ve daha sonra birinci, ikinci ve üçüncü katlara girdiği iddia ediliyor. Nusra Cephesi, bu saldırıda 9 Suriye askerinin öldürüldüğünü ileri sürdü. El Kaide ve İslami Cephe, daha sonra 20 Aralık'ta tekrar saldırdı. Bu saldırıda iki Kürt intihar bombacısının kullanıldığı belirtiliyor. Nusra Cephesi, bombacıların isimlerini Ebu el-Vada el-Kürdistani ve Ebu Turab el-Kürdistani olarak açıkladı.

Sleiman, Hezbollah still at odds over Cabinet, presidential vote and Syria war- The Daily Star

MP Mohammad Raad, the head of Hezbollah’s bloc in Parliament, held an ice-breaking meeting with President Michel Sleiman Monday following tension caused by the war in Syria.

But the two sides remained poles apart on crucial issues such as the Syrian crisis, the Cabinet formation efforts and next year’s presidential elections.

“It was a cordial meeting between the president and MP Raad, affirming the continued normal ties between the two sides,” a source at Baabda Palace told The Daily Star.

“Despite divergent views on the crisis in Syria and the Cabinet formation, the two sides maintain contacts,” the source said. “MP Raad’s visit to Baabda Palace has confirmed that there is no break in ties between Hezbollah and President Sleiman,” he added.

Syria issues second food tender using Iranian- The Daily Star

A Syrian state purchasing agency has issued a tender to buy 50,000 tonnes of flour with payment through an Iranian credit line, a tender document showed.

It was the second time Syria had asked to buy food through Iran this month after asking for quantities of sugar, rice, flour, oils and various other commodities in a tender which closed on Dec. 17.

Syria's General Foreign Trade Organisation (GFTO) said sellers must accept payment through an Iranian credit line under an agreement between the Commercial Bank of Syria and the Export Development Bank of Iran.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Planes carrying aid from UNHCR and WFP arrive in Qamishli airport- SANA

Hasaka, (SANA) – Two airplanes carrying relief aid for displaced and impoverished families in Hasaka province sent by the World Food Program (WFP) and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) arrived on Sunday evening in Qamishli International Airport.

Director of the UNHCR office in the eastern region Mustafa Hasan told SANA's correspondent that the aid consists of blankets, cooking implements and around 37 tons of flour.

In turn, Gabriel Saliba form the WFP said that this aid will be distributed among displaced and needy families with the help of Hasaka Governorate, the Social Affairs Department, the Syrian Arab Red Crescent, al-Berr Society, and the Armenian Society.

Aid planes are expected to continue arriving in Hasaka until December 27, with 12 such planes arriving in Qamishli so far.
On a relevant note, the UNHCR began distributing aid to locals and displaced families in Hasaka province on Monday, with UNHCR representative Yoko Akisaka telling SANA's correspondent that 200 tons of food will be distributed on this day.

Islamic Front joins al Qaeda suicide assault to take Syrian hospital- The Long War Journal

The Islamic Front, a newly formed jihadist group in Syria, recently launched a joint raid with one of al Qaeda's branches to take control of a hospital in the contested city of Aleppo. The operation to take the hospital culminated in a suicide assault that was led by two Kurdish bombers.
The joint operation was announced today by the Al Nusrah Front for the People of the Levant, one of two official al Qaeda branches that operate in Syria. The statement was published on jihadist forums and obtained and translated by the SITE Intelligence Group.
The Al Nusrah Front said that it commanded the Islamic Front and the Fajr al Sham Islamic Movement, an independent Salafist group, from what it described as a "joint tactical operations room."
"The joint tactical operations room of 'al-Qalb al-Wahid' (One Heart) - which is militarily led by al-Nusra Front and includes the Islamic Front and the Fajr al-Sham Islamic Movement - launched a blessed operation to end the hopes of the Nusayri army from reaching the al-Kindi hospital and lifting the siege from its soldiers who are trapped in the gate of northern Aleppo, near Aleppo Central Prison ..." according to the SITE translation.
The three groups tried to "storm the building" first on Dec. 4, by detonating a BMP armored personnel vehicle near the building and then sending a team to enter the breach.

El Kaide’nin kayıplarıyla ilgili son veriler- YDH

YDH- El Alem televizyonunun haberine göre Ürdün Cihatçı Selefi Hareketi, yaptığı açıklamada Tunus, Libya ve Irak’tan el-Kaide bağlantılı gruplara katılanların en çok kayıp verdiği yerin Suriye olduğunu belirtti.

Yapılan açıklamada 2011 yılının mart ayından bu yana Suriye’de savaşırken ölen selefi cihatçı sayısı 9 bin 936 olarak verildi.

Savaşmak için gidip Suriye’de öldürülen selefi cihatçıların ülkelere göre dağılımına ilişkin rakamların da verildiği açıklamada Tunus’tan 1902, Libya’dan 1807, Irak’tan 1432, Ürdün’den 202 kişinin Suriye yönetimine karşı savaşta öldüğü bildirildi.

Suriye'de Ilımlılar Nasıl Yok Oldu (Tolga Tanış-Hürriyet)


Bir röportajın şifreleri- YDH

YDH Suriye Temsilcisi Mehmet Serim, el-Cezire’nin Nusra Cephesi Lideri Ebu Muhammed Colani ile yaptığı röportajın satır aralarını yazdı.

Geçtiğimiz günlerde el-Cezire kanalı Nusra Cephesi Lideri Ebu Muhammed Colani ile yapıldığı iddia edilen bir röportaj yayımladı.

Röportajda dikkat çeken bazı ayrıntılar var. Bu yazımızda bu röportajın düşündürdüklerini paylaşmaya çalışacağız.

F-16'lardan Suriye uçaklarına karşı hamle- Kanal 7

22 Aralık günü İncirlik meydanından kalkış yaparak Gaziantep-Hatay bölgesinde 'Hava Muharebe Devriye Görevi' icra eden iki adet F-16 uçağı, Suriye'ye ait bir adet SU-24 uçağının Hatay Cilvegözü güneyinde sınıra doğru yaklaşması üzerine bölgeye yönlendirildi. Ancak söz konusu hava aracı, sınıra iki deniz mili kala geri dönerek bölgeden uzaklaştı.

Hezbollah fighter killed in border clash with Syrian rebels- Al-Akhbar

One Hezbollah fighter and an unknown number of Syrian rebels were killed in clashes early Sunday along the Lebanese-Syrian border after rebels crossed into Lebanese territory, Al-Akhbar's correspondent in the Bekaa reported.
The corespondent said that clashes broke out around 2:00 am after a Hezbollah patrol in the northeastern Jameela Valley region caught a contingent of Syrian rebel forces that had transgressed the border.
Fifty-one-year-old Ali Daghem Fares was killed and a number of other Hezbollah fighters injured in the ensuing battle, which took place on the outskirts of the town of Nahle. The correspondent did not specify the number of Syrian casualties.
No more details of the incident were known.
Lebanon's border areas with Syria have become increasingly volatile since the outbreak of the Syrian conflict over two and half years ago with frequent clashes and shelling striking villages along the frontier.

China expects Geneva II conference on Syria to be held as slated- Xinhua

BEIJING, Dec. 23 (Xinhua) -- China on Monday voiced the hope that the upcoming International Conference on Syria, or the Geneva II conference, will be held as slated.

"China hopes the meeting arrangement can be set as soon as possible, and supports relevant regions' and countries' participation in it," said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying at a daily press briefing.

China expects the meeting to yield positive outcomes, Hua said, expressing the hope that the political process can be substantively carried out at an early date to ensure the Syrian people a peaceful and stable life.

The conference, scheduled to open in the Swiss city of Montreux on Jan. 22, will bring the Syrian government and the opposition to the negotiating table for the first time since the conflict started in March 2011.

Delegates of the UN, the five UN Security Council permanent members, the League of Arab States, the EU, and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation will be present at the conference. Delegates from Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey -- the four main hosts to Syrian refugees -- will also be present. 

Representatives from Arab countries in the region, such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, and Egypt, as well as from Western countries, including Germany, Canada and Denmark, will also attend.

Irak ordusu Suriye sınırında büyük bir operasyon gerçekleştirecek- Rusya'nın Sesi

Arap televizyon kanalı Al Mayadin tarafından bildirildiğine göre, Irak ordusu Suriye ile sınır şehri Anbar’da El Kaide militanlarına karşı büyük bir terörle mücade operasyonu gerçekleştirecek. Bu operasyonda helikopter destekli büyük askeri birlikler görev alacak.

İtar Tass’ın haberine göre, bu askeri operasyonu bir hafta içerisinde Batı Çölü’ndeki terörist üslerinin ortadan kaldırılması görevini veren Irak Başbakanı Nuri el Maliki bizzat takip edecek.

Cumartesi günü 7.Alay Komutanı Tümgeneral Muhammed el Karaui’nin öldürülmesi üzerine ülke yönetimi sert tedbirler aldı. Karaui teröristlerin eğitim kampı ve patlayıcı madde hazırlama atölyesinin yer aldığı Bağdad’ın batısına 420 km. mesafedeki Rutba şehri yakınlarındaki Wadi Hauran’da teröristlerin muharebe sahasının tasfiye edilmesi operasyonunu yönetmişti. Generalin bulunduğu araç mayına çarpıp havaya uçarken, operasyonda 14 subay ve asker öldü, 32 kişi ise yaralandı.

300 dead in 8 days of air raids on Syria's Aleppo: NGO- Hurriyet Daily News

Syrian warplanes have killed more than 300 people, including 87 children, in an eight-day bombing campaign against rebel-held parts of the northern city of Aleppo, a monitor said Dec. 23.

“From Dec. 15 to 22, 301 people have been killed, including 87 children, 30 women and 30 rebels,” said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which relies on a network of activists and witnesses on the ground to track the civil war.

Opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad accuse his forces of dropping explosives-filled barrels on rebel-held areas in an effort to demoralize their supporters and turn them against the insurgents.

Syrian doctor: 'I lost count of the amputations' after assaults on Aleppo- CNN

Overwhelmed doctors frantically scurried over the weekend to help scores of patients left "dying on the floor" amid a punishing air assault on the northern Syrian city of Aleppo.

Syria facing major extremist offensive: Assad- PRESS TV

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says his country is being confronted by a major offensive led by Takfiri extremists.

"This is terrorism without limits, an international scourge that could strike anywhere and anytime," The Syrian president said in a meeting with a delegation of academics, researchers and activists from Australia, who had come to express their solidarity with the Syrian government.

The president also slammed Western countries, who "behave with duplicity and act according to their selfish interests, without understanding the reality or nature" of the Syrian conflict.

Teenage photographer killed in Syria- The Telegraph

A 17-year-old freelance photographer whose powerful images of Syriawere printed around the world has been killed while photographing a hospital in Aleppo.
Molhem Barakat died while photographing Kindi hospital – scene of a battle between rebel forces and President Bashar al-Assad's troops.
The teenager had been submitting photographs to Reuters news agency since May, and his photos of the war and daily life were widely published.
On Thursday, the day before his death, he took a striking an image of a member of the Liwaa al-Sultan Mrad brigade – a division of the Free Syrian Army. In the photo the man sits with his back to a mirror, which reflects the devastation of the streets around him. He cradles a gun, with Islamic scriptures on wall hangings displayed from the stone walls around him.

Syria talks incomplete without Iran: Russian official- PRESS TV

A high-ranking Russian official has stressed the need for Iran’s presence in the internationally brokered peace talks between Syria's warring sides next month, stressing that the event won’t be inclusive without the participation of the Islamic Republic.

Britons fighting in Syria stripped of nationality- Al-Arabiya

Britain has stripped the nationality of 20 dual-nations who have traveled to join fighting in crisis-torn Syria this year, it was revealed on Monday.
Home Secretary Theresa May targeted the 20 individuals who had been using “deprivation of citizenship orders,” records uncovered by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism show.
Under the British Nationality Act, “deprivation of citizenship orders” can be made without judicial approval and take immediate effect.

Kimyasal silah taşıyacak Rus kamyonları Suriye'de- BBC Türkçe

Rusya, Suriye’nin kimyasal silahlarını yok etmeye yardımcı olmak için 75 adet askeri kamyon gönderdi.
Savunma Bakanı Sergey Şoygu 50 Kamaz ve 25 Ural tipi zırhlı aracın gerekli ekipmanlarla beraber geçen hafta Lazkiye’ye gönderildiğini açıkladı.

Portre: Ahmet Salih Tuma- Al-Jazeera Turk

Suriye muhaliflerinin 14 Eylül 2013’de başbakan seçtiği Ahmet Salih Tuma’nın verdiği ilk söz şu oldu: “Suriye,  katil ve suçlulara yer olmayan halkın cumhuriyeti olacak...”
Tuma, Suriye Muhalif ve Devrimci Güçler Ulusal Koalisyonu’nun (SMDK) Gassan Hitto’dan sonra seçtiği ikinci başbakan oldu. Hitto, seçildikten üç ay sonra, Temmuz 2013’de,  SMDK içindeki görüş ayrılıklarıyla baş edemeyerek istifa etmişti.
Tuma da her ne kadar başbakanlık için tek aday olsa da İstanbul’da toplanan 115 kişilik SMDK yönetici kadrosunun tamamının oyunu alarak seçilmedi; 75 üye Tuma’ya ‘evet’ derken, 10 kişi ‘hayır’ oyu verdi. 12 üye boş oy kullandı. 

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Terrorists affiliated to Jabhat al-Nusra confess to assassination of Sheikh al-Bouti- SANA

Damascus, (SANA)- An armed terrorist group affiliated to Jabhat al-Nusra confessed to the assassination of Sheikh Mohammad Said Ramadan al-Bouti at al-Iman Mosque in Damascus after it was ordered by the leader of Jabhat al-Nusra.

"After that Sheikh al-Bouti criticized Jabhat al-Nusra operations in Syria we were ordered to kill him due to a fatwa by the legislative general official of Jabhat al-Nusra , nicknamed Abu Khadijeh al-Ordoni, " the armed terrorist group said in their confessions broadcast by the Syrian TV on Saturday.

The terrorist group said it was planned to assassinate Sheikh al-Bouti at al-Hamidiyyeh Souk after he finishes a Friday sermon at the Umayyad Mosque while his car passes across the Souk .

"The plan was changed after we get information that Sheikh al-Bouti addresses a religious lesson every Thursday at al-Iman Mosque so the assassination took place at the Mosque," the terrorists said.

They said that the plan of attacking Sheikh al-Bouti car by a person wearing an explosive belt was changed for fears that the car could be armored.

The terrorists added that Jabhat al-Nusra did not adopt the assassination as it was strongly condemned and rejected by the Syrian people because the assassination targeted a religious figure and a big number of worshipers.

On March 21, a suicide bombing targeted Sheikh al-Bouti while he was addressing a religious lesson at al-Iman Mosque.