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Showing posts from March 4, 2013

Syria and Iran condemn US plan to aid rebels

Syria and Iran joined forces on Saturday to condemn moves by Western powers to aid rebels fighting against President Bashar al-Assad.

In an television interview with the Sunday Times shown in London late on Saturday, Assad said Britain's involvement in the Syria crisis had been naive and unrealistic.

"I think they [Britain] are working against us, and they are working against the interests of the UK itself," Assad said in English-language remarks broadcast by Britain's Sky TV.

"This government is acting in a naive, confused and unrealistic manner. If they want to play a role they have to change this, they have to act in a more reasonable and responsible way."

Assad added: "How can you ask them to play a role in making the situation better, more stable, how can we expect them to make the violence less when they want to send the military supply to the terrorist?"

Backed by the United States, Britain and much of Western Europe, Syria's opposition has …

Dozens killed after a battle in North Syria

A ferocious battle on the outskirts of the city of Raqa has killed dozens of Syria's troops and rebel fighters, a watchdog has reported.



"Fierce clashes pitting rebel fighters from several battalions against regular troops have raged since dawn on the outskirts of Raqa city," said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on Saturday.

"Army troops shelled several city neighbourhoods, as well as the outskirts, while the clashes left dozens of troops and rebels dead," the Britain-based group said without giving exact numbers.

"Explosions could be heard in the city, and towers of smoke could be seen rising into the sky."

Both the observatory and activists in Raqa said the army was using helicopters to strafe rebels in some parts of the city, in a rare escalation of violence in the provincial capital.

Raqa city is strategically located near Syria's northern border with Turkey. Residents say it has become home to thousands of people forced to flee their homes…

If thieves can enter SHAR, can’t terrorists do it too?

After the terror blasts in the state capital last month, the police administration in Nellore district has sounded a high alert all along the 167 km coastline spanning 13 mandals, including Muthukuru and Sullurpet where the Krishnapatnam port and the Sriharikota rocket lauch facility are situated.

In view of sensitive nature of these two installations, particularly SHAR, the police have undertaken round-the-clock patrolling of the coastline in coordination with the marine police and the Coast Guard.

The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) and the Nellore police have intensified patrolling in the area around SHAR and are keeping a strict watch on the entry of newcomers.

According to coastal services inspector M Madhu Babu, there are three marine police stations at Dugarajapatnam in Vakadu mandal, Sriharikota in Sullurpet mandal, Iskapalle in Alluru mandal. Each has 70 personnel, who include one circle inspector, one station house officer and four head constables. He said they have be…

Car bomb kills 37, wounds 141 in southern Pakistan

A car bomb exploded outside a mosque on Sunday, killing 37 people and wounding another 141 in a Shiite Muslim dominated neighborhood in the southern Pakistan city of Karachi — the third mass casualty attack on the minority sect in the country this year.

No one has taken responsibility for the bombing, but Shiite Muslims have been increasingly targeted by Sunni militant groups in Karachi, Pakistan's economic hub and site of years of political, sectarian and ethnic violence, as well as other parts of the country.

The bomb exploded outside a Shiite mosque as people were leaving evening prayers in Pakistan's largest city. Initial reports suggested the bomb was rigged to a motorcycle, but a top police official, Shabbir Sheikh, said later that an estimated 100 kilograms (220 pounds) of explosives was planted in a car.

Col. Pervez Ahmad, an official with a Pakistani paramilitary force called the Rangers, said a chemical used in the blast caught fire and spread the destruction beyond the…

20 people killed in extremists' attack in Nigeria

A witness and officials say at least 20 people have been killed in an attack by Islamic extremists on a military base in northeast Nigeria.

The attack happened Sunday in the village of Monguno, some 200 kilometers (125 miles) from the city of Maiduguri.

Military spokesman Lt. Col. Sagir Musa said in a statement all those killed were believed to be fighters from the radical Islamic terrorist network Boko Haram. However, witnesses said at least one of the dead appeared to be a civilian.

Military officials in Nigeria routinely downplay civilian casualties. An Associated Press journalist could not immediately reach the area Sunday.

Boko Haram and its splinter groups are waging a bloody guerrilla campaign against Nigeria's weak central government.

Hundreds die in Syria police academy fight

A week-long battle for a police academy in the northern Syrian province of Aleppo has left hundreds of troops and rebels dead.Hundreds of Syrian troops and rebels have been killed in a week-long battle for a police academy in the northern province of Aleppo, with insurgents seizing control of most of the complex, a monitoring group says.

"Rebels have seized most of a police academy in Khan al-Assal in Aleppo province ... after eight days of fighting that left 200 troops and rebels dead," said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The Britain-based group said at least 120 army troops were among those killed in the battle for one of the regime's last remaining bastions in the west of Aleppo province. On Sunday alone, rebels killed more than 34 troops at the facility.

A police source in Aleppo confirmed that much of the academy had fallen into rebel hands, reporting that 40 security forces were believed dead. As many as 300 rebels were among those killed, he said.

Elsewhere,…

Pakistan city halts to bury 45 bomb dead

Traffic was thin as Karachi's educational institutions, businesses and markets closed on Monday after the local government announced a day of mourning.

Pakistan's largest city has shut down to mourn 45 people killed by a car bomb in a Shi'ite Muslim neighbourhood, the latest in a series of devastating pre-election attacks.

Traffic was thin as Karachi's educational institutions, businesses and markets closed on Monday after the local government announced a day of mourning and Shi'ite groups three days of mourning for those killed in the blast.

The bomb exploded as Sunday worshippers were leaving mosques in Abbas Town, ripping through two apartment blocks and trapping people beneath piles of rubble.

Those who survived but whose homes were damaged or destroyed are being housed temporarily in schools, officials said.

Local transport and traders' associations said they would not be working on Monday.

"There will be no public transport on the roads today," said K…

Information Warfare Against Syria

By Amal Saad-Ghorayeb

March 03, 2013- "ASG" - One of the strategies in the information warfare against Syria is the psycho-pathologization and infantilization of Assad as detached from reality/delusional, irrational and irresponsible. There are abundant examples of the employment of this strategy, not only against the Syrian president, but against all members of the resistance axis (I will be writing a series of articles on this soon). It was therefore encouraging to see how Assad detected this strategy by launching his own counter-attack in his interview with the Sunday Times.

Here for example, Assad not only responds to the “detached from reality” charge, but turns it on its head and deflects it back to its source:

“Firstly, detached from reality: Syria has been fighting adversaries and foes for two years; you cannot do that if you do not have public support. People will not support you if you are detached from their reality. A recent survey in the UK shows that a good propor…