BEIRUT, Dec 17 (Reuters) – Syrian Vice President Farouq
al-Sharaa said that neither the forces of President Bashar
al-Assad nor rebels seeking to overthrow him can win the war
which is now being fought on the outskirts of Assad’s powerbase
Sharaa, a Sunni Muslim in a power structure dominated by
Assad’s Alawite minority, has rarely been seen since the Syrian
revolt erupted in March 2011 and is not part of the president’s
inner circle directing the fight against Sunni rebels.
BEIRUT, Dec 15 (Reuters) – Iran’s army chief of staff warned
NATO on Saturday that stationing Patriot anti-missile batteries
on Turkey’s border with Syria was setting the stage for world
General Hassan Firouzabadi, whose country has been a staunch
supporter of President Bashar al-Assad throughout the 21-month
uprising against his rule, called on the Western military
alliance to reverse its decision to deploy the defence system.
BEIRUT (Reuters) – Syrian warplanes bombed insurgents east of Damascus on Saturday and government forces pounded a town to the southwest, activists said, in a month-long and so far fruitless campaign to dislodge rebels around the capital.
Jets bombarded the Beit Sahm district on the road leading to the international airport and the army fired rockets at several rebel strongholds around Damascus, President Bashar al-Assad’s bastion through 21 months of an increasingly bloody uprising.
BEIRUT, Dec 11 (Reuters) – Syrian rebels clashed with forces
loyal to President Bashar al-Assad near Damascus airport on
Tuesday, battling for the capital’s outskirts after 20 months of
conflict which the United Nations said has driven half a million
people from the country.
Fighting near the airport, 20 km (12 miles) south-east of
Damascus city centre, is part of a broader confrontation between
Assad’s forces and rebels who hold a near continuous arc of
territory from the east to the southwest of Assad’s power base.
BRUSSELS/BEIRUT (Reuters) – NATO told Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Tuesday that any use of chemical weapons in his fight against encroaching rebel forces would be met by an immediate international response.
The warning from NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen came as U.S. government sources said Washington had information that Syria was making what could be seen as preparations to use its chemical arsenal.
BEIRUT, Dec 4 (Reuters) – Syrian government forces bombarded
rebel districts near Damascus on Tuesday in a sustained
counter-attack to stem rebel gains around President Bashar
al-Assad’s power base.
The fighting around Damascus has led foreign airlines to
suspend flights and prompted the United Nations and European
Union to reduce their presence in the capital, adding to a sense
that the fight is closing in.
BEIRUT (Reuters) – Syrian government forces bombarded rebel districts near Damascus on Tuesday in a sustained counter-attack to stem rebel gains around President Bashar al-Assad’s power base.
The fighting around Damascus has led foreign airlines to suspend flights and prompted the United Nations and European Union to reduce their presence in the capital, adding to a sense that the fight is closing in.
BEIRUT, Nov 30 (Reuters) – Syrian air force jets bombarded
rebel targets on Friday close to the Damascus airport road and a
regional airline said the violence had halted international
flights to the capital.
Activists said security forces clashed with rebels trying to
topple President Bashar al-Assad around Aqraba and Babilla
districts on the southeastern outskirts of the Damascus which
lead to the international airport.
BEIRUT, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Two car bombs exploded in an
attack that killed at least 34 people on Wednesday in a district
of the Syrian capital loyal to President Bashar al-Assad.
The explosions struck the eastern neighbourhood of Jaramana,
home to many of Syria’s Druze minority as well as Christians who
have fled violence elsewhere, ripping through nearby shops and
bringing debris crashing down on cars.
BEIRUT (Reuters) – Rebel strikes against military bases across Syria have exposed President Bashar al-Assad’s weakening grip in the north and east of the country and left his power base in Damascus vulnerable to the increasingly potent opposition forces.
Rebel fighters, who have taken at least five army and air installations in the last 10 days, are still waging an asymmetrical war against a powerful army backed by devastating air power, and predict months of conflict still lie ahead.