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  • » 06/27/2012, 00.00

    SYRIA

    Damascus, attack on a pro-government television station, three dead



    The assault happened in Drousha 20 km south of the capital. So far there are no claims of responsibility. Bashar al-Assad announces that Syria is at war. Government cabinet reshuffled. The priority is to fight and defeat the terrorists.

    Damascus (AsiaNews / Agencies) - A group of armed men this morning stormed the headquarters of Ikhbariya TV, a private television station close to President Bashar Al-Assad, in Druousha located about 20 km south of Damascus. Three people were killed in the attack. An employee of the television station said that the men broke into the complex, taking guards hostage and later blew up two buildings. According to state news agency SANA, the attack was carried out by unidentified terrorists, but so far no group has claimed responsibility. For days clashes between rebels and troops of the elite of the Syrian regime have been taking place on the outskirts of Damascus, leaving 40 dead over the weekend, 116 across the country.

    The recent tension between Ankara and Damascus after the shooting down of a Turkish jet last June 22 along the coast of Syria, threatens to worsen the conflict between Sunni insurgents and the regime. Yesterday, Turkish Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced new rules of engagement for armed forces along a 600 km border with Syria. He warned the former Syrian ally that "from now on, Turkey will respond with the weapons to" any violation of the border. "However, the Turkish Premier in agreement with the other members of NATO has ruled out the hypothesis of an armed intervention in Syria.

    In response to Erdogan's statements, Bashar al-Assad said "Syria is in a state of war". Yesterday, he reformed the government cabinet, ordering that all efforts must be used to combat and defeat the rebels.

     

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    See also

    26/06/2012 TURKEY - SYRIA
    Ankara warns UN the jet shot down a "security threat" from Syria
    The Turkish deputy prime minister declares that this "hostile act ... shall not be unpunished." Today, NATO meets to discuss a possible joint response to Syria. But Erdogan remains moderate and European countries exclude any military action.

    04/10/2012 TURKEY - SYRIA
    Turkish reprisals on Syrian border. Push for NATO intervention
    Representatives from Ankara warn the UN and seek military intervention of the NATO member countries. But there are those who suspect that the bombs were thrown by anti-Assad rebels to provoke war in the region.

    11/08/2012 SYRIA-USA-TURKEY
    Hillary Clinton in Turkey in search of " the day after Assad "
    The U.S. Secretary of State discusses support to Syrian rebels and transition plan with leaders in Ankara, as international isolation of Damascus increases. Concerns regarding reports of Al-Qaeda presence on the ground. Gunfight at border with Jordan.

    25/06/2012 TURKEY - SYRIA
    Tension mounts between Ankara and Damascus. NATO and EU to debate shooting down of jet
    The Turkish foreign minister says the attack occurred over international waters. Strong criticism from the U.S. and Britain. Syria lowers tones: "There is no enmity between Syria and Turkey." NATO’s difficult position.

    06/09/2012 SYRIA - TURKEY
    Syrian rebels trained in refugee camps on Turkish border
    Ankara claims that the Apaydin camp in the province of Hatay is home to former Syrian military and their families displaced by the Assad regime. But parliament has never discussed the creation of the camp. Authorities prohibit any access to preserve the security of refugees who considered "special". In reality, the camp is a military base where the rebels of the 'Free Syrian Army are trained and from which they depart daily to fight against Assad.



    Editor's choices

    EGYPT – VATICAN
    Pope in Egypt: Egypt called to condemn violence and poverty in the Middle East



    In his address to Egyptian authorities, Francis stressed Egypt’s role and responsibility in the future of the region. "In the fragile and complex situation of today’s world, which I have described as ‘a world war being fought piecemeal’, it needs to be clearly stated that no civilized society can be built without repudiating every ideology of evil, violence and extremism that presumes to suppress others and to annihilate diversity by manipulating and profaning the Sacred Name of God.”


    ISLAM – VATICAN – EGYPT
    A Muslim writes to the pope: Dear Pope Francis . . .

    Kamel Abderrahmani

    He admires the charity shown by the pontiff towards Syrian Muslim refugees, and his push in favour of love and against hatred. Islamic scholars are not like this, he says, they do not denounce Daesh’s hatred and do nothing for Christians. He calls on the pontiff to press President to Sisi and Al Azhar to reform Islam. Without this Al Azhar risks being the academy of world fundamentalism. Here is the letter from our friend and collaborator Kamel Abderrahmani.


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