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Jan 18, 2013

Explosion rocks government-held area of Syria’s Aleppo

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Twelve people were killed when an explosion rocked a government -held district of the disputed Syrian city of Aleppo on Friday, a monitoring group said, and both sides in the conflict accused the other of mounting the attack.

State television showed the collapsed side of a building and rubble spilling into nearby streets. A crowd sifted through the wreckage as medics loaded bloodied bodies onto stretchers.

Jan 11, 2013

Syria rebels seize base as envoy holds talks

BEIRUT/GENEVA, Jan 11 (Reuters) – Rebels seized control of
one of Syria’s largest helicopter bases on Friday, opposition
sources said, in their first capture of a military airfield used
by President Bashar al-Assad’s forces.

Fighting raged across the country as international mediator
Lakhdar Brahimi sought a political solution to Syria’s civil
war, meeting senior U.S. and Russian officials in Geneva.

Jan 11, 2013

Rebels say they seized helicopter base in Syria

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Rebels seized a strategic air base in northern Syria on Friday after months of fighting, activists and insurgents said, further weakening President Bashar al-Assad’s grip on the region.

Rebels had fought for the base used by military helicopters in Idlib province for months, but it only fell after Islamist units reinforced them earlier this month.

Jan 10, 2013

“Snowball truce” brings brief joy to war-weary Damascus

BEIRUT (Reuters) – For a few fleeting hours, residents of Syria’s capital dropped their guns for snowballs and traded hatred for laughter.

A rare snowfall that covered Damascus in white on Wednesday sparked an overnight outbreak of playfulness among Syrians, who momentarily ignored their bloody civil war and forgot their affiliations as dissidents, loyalists and even soldiers.

Jan 9, 2013

U.N. envoy says Assad can’t be in Syrian transition

CAIRO/BEIRUT, Jan 9 (Reuters) – The U.N. peace envoy for
Syria said on Wednesday that Bashar al-Assad could have no place
in a transitional government to end civil war, the closest he
has come to calling directly for the embattled president to
quit.

A peace plan agreed by major powers in Geneva last year
envisages an interim administration. “Surely he would not be a
member of that government,” U.N. envoy Lakhdar Brahimi told
Reuters in an interview in Cairo.

Jan 9, 2013

U.N. envoy says 40 years of Assad family rule is “too long”

BEIRUT, Jan 9 (Reuters) – Syrians believe that 40 years of
Assad family rule is too long, the international mediator for
Syria said, the closest he has come to calling directly for
President Bashar al-Assad to leave power.

U.N. envoy Lakhdar Brahimi appears to have been pushed to
take a firmer stance by a speech Assad delivered on Sunday,
which was billed as a new peace proposal but offered no
concessions and included a vow never to talk to foes he branded
terrorists and Western puppets.

Jan 9, 2013

Winter storm brings devastation to Syria and neighbours

BEIRUT (Reuters) – The worst winter storm in two decades has hit the eastern Mediterranean this week, bringing destruction and death to Syria and its neighbours who are already dealing with a refugee crisis from the country’s civil war.

Opposition activists in Syria, where war has forced hundreds of thousands of people from their homes and cut off access to food, fuel and power for cities and towns, say dozens of people have died there in four days of relentless extreme weather.

Jan 8, 2013

Syrians brush off Assad speech as fighting rages

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Fighting raged across Syria on Monday with clashes reported just a few miles from where President Bashar al-Assad had unveiled a “peace plan” that Syrians on both sides said would do nothing to end the country’s 21-month-old uprising.

Hours after Assad addressed cheering loyalists at the Damascus Opera House on Sunday in his first public speech in months, fighting erupted near the road to the city’s international airport, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Jan 7, 2013

Syrians brush off Assad speech, fighting continues

BEIRUT, Jan 7 (Reuters) – Fighting raged across Syria on
Monday, including just a few miles from where President Bashar
al-Assad had unveiled a “peace plan” that Syrians on both sides
said would do nothing to end a 21-month-old uprising.

Hours after Assad addressed cheering loyalists at the
Damascus Opera House on Sunday in his first public speech in
months, clashes erupted near the road to the city’s
international airport, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights
said.

Jan 6, 2013

Assad “peace plan” greeted with scorn by enemies

BEIRUT (Reuters) – A defiant President Bashar al-Assad presented what he described as a new initiative on Sunday to end the war in Syria but his opponents dismissed it as a ploy to cling to power.

Appearing before cheering supporters who packed the Damascus Opera House, it was his first such speech since June and first public appearance of any kind since a television interview in November.

    • About Erika

      "I am a correspondent based in Dubai, where I focus mainly on political and general news in the UAE and the greater Arab Gulf region. I previously worked for Reuters in the Palestinian territories."
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