"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)



Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Rusya, İran ve Suriye dışişleri bakanları Moskova'da görüşecek- Al-Jazeera Turk

Rusya Dışişleri Bakanlığı Sözcüsü Maria Zaharova Ria-Novosti ajansına yaptığı açıklamada, hafta sonu Moskova'da Rusya Dışişleri Bakanı Sergey Lavrov, İran Dışişleri Bakanı Cevad Zarif ve Suriye Dışişleri Bakanı Velid Muallim'in üçlü görüşme yapmasının planlandığını açıkladı.

Rus basınında yer alan haberlerde, Zarif'in 14 Nisan'da Moskova'da olacağı belirtildi.

Görüşmede, Suriye'nin İdlib kentindeki Han Şeyhun beldesinde düzenlenen kimyasal silah saldırısı ve ABD'nin Esed rejimine ait hava üssünü vurmasının ardından son gelişmelerin değerlendirilmesi bekleniyor.

Rusya, İran ve Suriye üçlü toplantısı, Rusya ve ABD dışişleri bakanlarının Moskova'daki görüşmesinin ardından düzenlenecek.

Samir Franjieh Passes Away after Battle with Illness- Naharnet

Former MP and March 14 politician Samir Franjieh passed away on Tuesday at the age of 71 after a battle with an incurable disease, state-run National News Agency reported.
He was receiving treatment at the Hôtel-Dieu de France hospital in Beirut.
Prime Minister Saad Hariri hailed Franjieh as “a prominent symbol of the glorious March 14 Uprising, which played the key role in ending the Syrian tutelage in Lebanon.”
“Samir Franjieh remained faithful and loyal to the principles and pillars of the Cedar Revolution, despite all the challenges and risks, and did not change his approach and his adherence to sovereignty, independence and coexistence until the last moment of his life,” Hariri said.

Geagea Rejects Extension, Blames Electoral Law Crisis on 'Hizbullah Obstinacy'- Naharnet

Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea reiterated Tuesday his party's rejection of an extension of parliament's term without an agreement on a new electoral law, blaming the crisis on what he called “Hizbullah's obstinacy.”
“'Full proportional representation or extension without an agreement on a law' is an equation that we cannot accept and we will not bow to the dictates of the group that is trying to impose it on us,” Geagea said in an interview with the al-Markazia news agency.
He confirmed that the LF and its Christian ally the Free Patriotic Movement will “boycott” Thursday's legislative session which has extension on its agenda.
“All electoral efforts have been blocked by Hizbullah's obstinacy,” Geagea added, accusing Hizbullah of “putting the country in the face of a major dilemma.”

Tillerson in Russia, Says Moscow Must Choose between West or Assad and His Allies- Naharnet

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson flew into Moscow Tuesday to confront the Kremlin over its support for Bashar al-Assad as the U.S. questioned if Russia was complicit in an alleged chemical weapons attack.  
Tillerson is the first senior U.S. official to visit Moscow since President Donald Trump took office promising to seek closer anti-terrorist cooperation with Russia, but as he arrived relations were already tense.
Last week, the U.S. fired a volley of cruise missiles at a Syrian airbase in response to an alleged regime attack using a suspected nerve agent that killed at least 87 civilians in a rebel-held town, many of them children.
Russia, which along with Iran has deployed forces to help Assad in the six-year-old civil war, reacted with fury to the U.S. strike and continues to cast doubt on the regime's involvement in the chemical attack, to Washington's disgust.
Tillerson did not cancel his visit, however, and he will hold talks with his counterpart Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday. It is not yet clear whether an expected meeting with President Vladimir Putin will go ahead.

Two Russian servicemen killed in Syria shelling, one injured – MoD- RT

Two Russian servicemen have been killed after they came under shelling in Syria, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement, adding that one more soldier remains in the hospital, with doctors struggling to save his life.
Those killed were serving as military instructors within a unit of the Syrian forces, according to the statement. The unit came under mortar shelling launched by “a group of militants.”

Monday, April 10, 2017

United States Deploying Forces At Syrian-Jordanian Border-Reports- South Front

Reports are circulating that  yesterday the US army made some very unusual movement at the Syrian-Jordanian border, north of Jordan’s Al-Mafraq Governorate.
Local sources said that about 20 US Army armoured vehicles (including battle tanks and artillery pieces) carried on trucks were spotted in Al-Mafraq. US troops were allegedly accompanied with the Jordanian Army’s 3rd Division.
Menawhile, ISIS carried out a large attack against the US-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) in the Syrian desert. The US and Jordanian special forces took part in repelling of this attack. Locals from Al-Mafraq have talked about hearing a large number of explosions and jets flying on the Syrian side of the border.
The US Special Operation Forces, the UK Special Operation Forces and units from some other countries have been conducting operations across the Syrian-Jordanian border for a long time. However, it was the first time when a notable number of US amoured vehicles was spotted there.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Syrian Military Deploying More Reinforcements Ahead Large-Scale Advance In Northern Hama- South Front

Intense clashes are ongoing in the Hama countryside where the joint forces of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) oppose the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies.
Militants are still strugging to fully capture Ma’ardes but they have not been able to do this after days of non-stop firefights.
According to opposition sources, HTS successfully repelled an advance of the SAA on Helfaya destroying a tank and 57mm gun in Rahbat al-Khattab. HTS also continued to shell government forces positions and civilian areas in Mahardeh and Qamhana.
The Russian and Syrian Air Forces carried out a series of powerful strikes that targeted HTS and FSA positions in Al-Lataminah, Ma’arrat Al-Nu’man, Ma’artaherma, and Basida.
Separately, more and more photos appear in the social media depicting large convoys of the SAA’s Tiger Forces and the Republican Guard heading to northern Hama ahead of the expected large-scale offensive to retake this area from militants. Ma’ardes, Sawran, Al-Lataminah, Taybat al-Imam, and Morek will likely become the first target of government forces.

No ‘Political Solution’ In Syria Possible With Assad In Power, Regime Change Is Top Priority-US Ambassador To UN- South Front

The US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, has announced the new strategy of the Trump administration in the Syrian conflict.

According to Haley, the regime change in Syria is one of the top priorities of the US foreign policy and a political solution of the crisis is not going to happen “with Assad at the head of the regime.”
“There’s not any sort of option where a political solution is going to happen with Assad at the head of the regime,” Haley said in an interview on CNN’s State of the Union, adding that “Regime change is something that we think is going to happen.”

US strikes mark a new turn in Syria and beyond. Destination unknown- The Guardian

The decision of the US finally to punish Bashar al-Assad for the use of chemical weapons against civilians will turn out to be, no doubt, a catalyst for a new chapter in the Syrian conflict. Even though US officials repeatedly emphasised the missile strikes on the Shayrat airfield were a one-off punitive measure, the unprecedented move comes amid a set of turning points in different parts of Syria and in the way foreign actors operate there. It is against the backdrop of these changes that the regime’s logic behind the use of chemical weapons should be viewed.

Assad allies say U.S. attack on Syria air base crosses 'red lines'- Reuters

A joint command center made up of the forces of Russia, Iran and militias supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Sunday said the U.S. strike on a Syrian air base on Friday crossed "red lines" and it would respond to any new aggression and increase its support for its ally.

The United States fired dozens of cruise missiles at a Syrian air base on Friday from which it said a deadly chemical weapons attack had been launched earlier in the week, escalating the U.S. role in Syria and drawing criticism from Assad's allies including Russia and Iran.

Islamic State launches two suicide attacks on U.S.-backed Syrian rebels- Reuters

Islamic State militants launched two suicide attacks on U.S.-backed Syrian rebels near the border with Iraq, leaving at least 12 dead in the fighting and many wounded, rebel sources said on Sunday.

They said eight Islamic State fighters and four of their own men died.

An attack at midnight on a heavily defended base near the al Tanf border crossing involved at least one explosive-laden vehicle that rammed an entrance to the base. At least two U.S.-backed rebels were killed and scores wounded, a rebel source said.

Russia, Iran and Hezbollah military leaders release joint statement, threatens the U.S- Al-Masdar News

The military operation rooms of Russia, Iran, Hezbollah and other allies have just released a new joint statement. This joint statement was spurred on by US aggression that saw the country strike the Shayrat Airbase in rural Homs with Tomahawk missiles.
The statement released in Arabic states that the allied operations room recognizes that the US is supporting the separation of northern Syria and Iraq from their respective states.
Point seven of the statement details how all US military are legitimate targets as they have crossed every red line possible and operate illegally in Syria. It then emphasizes that the joint military operations room will respond strongly to any aggression and any violation made by the US in Syria.

Christian Parties to Boycott Any Session Aimed at Extending Parliament Term- Naharnet

The Free Patriotic Movement, the Lebanese Forces and the Kataeb Party intend to boycott any parliamentary session aimed at extending the legislature's term in the absence of a new electoral law, a senior FPM official told al-Hayat daily in remarks published Sunday.
The Cabinet is scheduled to convene on Monday to discuss the latest proposed electoral law formats.
Reports have said that Speaker Nabih Berri might call for a parliament session aimed at extending the legislature's term should the parties fail to agree on a new electoral law.

5 Dead, 32 Hurt as Heavy Ain el-Hilweh Clashes Continue for 3rd Day- Naharnet

At least five people have been killed and 32 others wounded in three days of fierce clashes at the Palestinian refugee camp of Ain el-Hilweh in the southern city of Sidon, state-run National News Agency said.
NNA identified the fifth victim killed in the fighting between the Joint Palestinian Security Forces and hardline Islamists led by Bilal Badr as Firas Balous.
Ambulances were rushing the wounded to hospitals near Ain el-Hilweh as the sounds of rocket-propelled grenades and gunfire echo from inside.
On Saturday, local Palestinian commander Subhi Abu Arab vowed to crush the followers of radical preacher Bilal Badr.
The clashes erupted in the camp on Friday as the Joint Palestinian Security Force started deploying throughout the camp.
It came under fire from Badr's Islamist group in part of the camp, which sparked fierce clashes.
Among the dead were two civilians, two members of the Joint Force and one member of the extremist group, medical sources said.

Friday, April 07, 2017

Russia Suspends Memorandum With US on Flight Safety in Syria - Foreign Ministry- Sputnik News

Russia has suspended its memorandum of understanding on air safety over Syria with the United States following the deadly US missile attack on the Sha'irat airfield, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Friday.

Lavrov compares US strike in Syria to 2003 Iraq invasion TASS

TASHKENT, April 7. /TASS/. The US missile attack on a Syrian airbase is an act of aggression under a far-fetched pretext and is reminiscent of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Friday.

"It is an act of aggression under a completely far-fetched pretext," the top diplomat stated. "This is reminiscent of the situation in 2003, when the US and the UK, along with some of their allies, invaded Iraq without the consent of the UN Security Council and in violation of international law."

İsrail ve Suudi Arabistan’dan 'tam destek'- Al-Jazeera Turk

İsrail ve Suudi Arabistan, ABD'nin Suriye'de rejime ait Şayrat Hava üssüne füze saldırısına 'tam destek' verdiklerini açıkladı. İsrail Başbakanı Netanyahu, "Bu kararlılık mesajının sadece Şam'da değil, aynı zamanda Tahran'da, Pyongyang'da ve diğer yerlerde de yankılanmasını ümit etmekteyiz" dedi.

Putin calls US strikes against Syria 'aggression against sovereign country'- TASS

MOSCOW, April 7. /TASS/. The US missile strike against Syria’s facilities was an act of aggression and impairs both Russian-US relations and the key goal of fighting international terrorism, Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Friday citing the opinion of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

President Putin considers the US strikes against Syria an act of aggression against a sovereign country violating the norms of international law, and under a trumped-up pretext at that," Peskov stressed. He noted that the Syrian army has no stockpiles of chemical weapons. "The fact that all Syrian armed forces’ chemical weapons stockpiles were eliminated was registered and confirmed by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), a specialized UN unit," he highlighted.

US Launches Tomahawk Cruise Missiles at Airbase in Syria- Sputnik News

The United States has launched dozens of Tomahawk cruise missiles at an airbase in Syria, the Pentagon confirmed late Thursday.

Around 60 Tomahawk cruise missiles were launched on Thursday night at the military airfield in Ash Sha’irat 38 kilometers southeast of the city of Homs, NBC reported, citing US military officials.
US military ships in the Mediterranean launched the strike between 8 and 9 pm ET.
No immediate information on possible casualties was available. The strikes targeted aircraft and infrastructure, including the runway, but not people, US officials told NBC.
Pentagon released a footage of the attack, also eyewitnesses are posting on Twitter videos with view from the ground.

Fury in Damascus, Moscow as U.S. Hits Syria Airbase with Dozens of Missiles- Naharnet

Damascus and its ally Moscow furiously condemned an American air strike on a Syrian airbase Friday that marked the first direct U.S. assault on President Bashar al-Assad's government.
U.S. allies rallied around Washington after President Donald Trump launched the massive strike in retaliation for a "barbaric" chemical attack he blamed on Assad.
But Assad's office called the strike "foolish and irresponsible" and Moscow announced a series of retaliatory steps including plans to strengthen Syrian air defenses.
Russia also demanded an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council and U.S. diplomats said it was to meet at 11:30 am (1530 GMT) on Friday.
The strike -- Trump's biggest military decision since taking office -- marked a dramatic escalation in American involvement in Syria's six-year civil war.
It followed days of outrage at images of dead children and victims suffering convulsions from the suspected sarin gas attack in the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhun.
U.S. officials said 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles were fired from warships in the Mediterranean at the Shayrat airfield at 3:40 am (0040 GMT), dealing heavy damage to the base from where Washington believes Tuesday's deadly attack was launched.
Syrian state news agency SANA said nine civilians including four children were killed in villages near the base.
"What America did is nothing but foolish and irresponsible behavior, which only reveals its short-sightedness and political and military blindness to reality," Assad's office said.
- Iran rejects 'bogus allegations' -
Damascus has denied using chemical weapons in Khan Sheikhun, where at least 86 people, including 30 children, were reported killed and more than 500 wounded.