» 08/14/2012, 00.00
Assad regime collapsing, ex prime minister says
At a press conference in Amman (Jordan), Hijab said the government is in control of only 30 per cent of the territory. He calls on Syrian political leaders and officials to break away from the regime. Assad's special envoy is in Beijing to find a diplomatic solution to the conflict.
(AsiaNews/ Agencies) - The "regime is collapsing [. . .]. Militarily it is
crumbling as it no longer occupies more than 30 per cent of Syrian territory," said
Riad Hijab, a former Syrian prime minister who fled, at a press conference in
Amman, Jordan. Its fall is a matter of weeks. Morally, materially and
economically, the system has imploded. The ex premier urged the opposition to
set up a united front to build a new Syria, and called on the military to stop slaughtering
civilians. He said he will join the rebels and wants Assad supporters to break
away from the regime.
who fled last week, is the highest ranking official from the Assad regime to defect
and to call for his removal. He is not the only top official to do so. Syrian Republic
Guard Brigadier General Manaf Tlass, one of Assad's top military advisers, and Nawaf
al-Faes, Syrian ambassador to Iraq, have also defected.
statement comes as Syrian President's special envoy Bouthaina Shaaban met Chinese
Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi in Beijing. His visit, which is meant to find a
diplomatic solution to the conflict and revive the Annan plan, has also
rekindled the debate over China's support for the current Syrian government, a position
criticised by the European Union, the United States and the Arab League, which
back the opposition, financially and otherwise.
Foreign Ministry spokesperson Qin Gang said yesterday that the meeting with Bouthaina
was part of Beijing's diplomatic effort to mediate between rebels and the
regime. The latter includes a future meeting with rebel representatives to
negotiate an immediate ceasefire.
17 months of war, China and Russia have vetoed three UN Security Council's
resolutions in order to prevent any anti-Assad measure from being taken.
fighting continues in Aleppo as rebels claim to have shot down a Syrian fighter
plane, producing footage of a man they say was the captured pilot.
violence broke out, some 20,000 people have died and 2 million civilians have
been caught in the crossfire. About a million have been made homeless. About 140,000
Syrian refugees have crossed into Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey and Iraq.
humanitarian chief Valerie Amos is in Damascus today to assess ways to increase
the flow of emergency aid. She is expected to ask rebels and government for a
humanitarian corridor to help civilians.
should meet Syria's new prime minister, Wail al-Halqi, Foreign Minister Walid Muallem, and his deputy Faisal Meqdad.
Riad Sargi, a Catholic engineer, and his family have remained in Syria, waiting for peace
Hailing from Damascus, Riad Sargi has not left his country despite the war. At the World Meeting of Families, he received a copy of the Gospel from the pope. He calls his homeland "the cradle of Christianity" and views his task as helping the poor, the old and the abandoned. For him, living with Muslims is possible.
Akram al-Bunni, a Christian, a Communist dissident and critic of Assad, arrested
Jailed several times for about 20 years for criticising the Assad regime and calling for a democratic transformation of society, last year he called on Syria's minorities not to use fear of radical Islam to endorse the Assad dictatorship.
27/09/2013 SYRIA - UNITED NATIONS
As jihadist rebels burn two Catholic churches in ar-Raqqah, Assad's enemies openly split
Fundamentalists target the Greek Catholic Church of the Annunciation and the Armenian Church of the Holy Martyrs, destroying the cross on the bell tower of one of them and raising the Islamist flag, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights laments. As divisions grow within the anti-Assad opposition, fundamentalist groups reject the authority of the Syrian National Council, trying instead to impose Sharia. The Security Council is ready to adopt a resolution on the destruction of Assad's chemical weapons with the support of Russia and the United States.
As the war comes to Syrian Kurdistan, Ankara envisages military action
A suicide bomber hits Qamishli, killing four and wounding scores. The city was one of the few places left under total government control. Turkish foreign minister suggests establishing a buffer zone on the Syrian border, and does not exclude "humanitarian" military action. Rebels set fire to the Old City of Aleppo, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Assad's army set to reconquer Homs
About 70 per cent of rebel-held areas have been destroyed. According to Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the ground and air offensive against Homs, the country's third largest city and a symbol of rebellion since March 2011, continues.
Pope: The Churches of the East are alive, despite persecution and terrorism
Receiving the participants at the "Reunion of Aid Agencies for the Oriental Churches" Assembly, Francis recommends the formation of the clergy. "Let us not forget that in the East even today, Christians - no matter whether Catholics, Orthodox, or Protestants - spill their blood as a seal of their witness."
The German ambassador asks China to release Msgr. Shao Zhumin
In an official statement posted on the embassy site, Michael Clauss asks that the detained bishop of Wenzhou, be given full freedom of movement. Concerns also expressed over drafts of the new regulations on religious activities, which decree the end of the underground communities. It is the first time after a decade that a European ambassador has called for the release of a bishop.
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