Jonathon's Feed
Oct 2, 2012

Turkey’s regional ambition distances it from Europe

ANKARA, Oct 2 (Reuters) – From a poem steeped in Islamic
tradition to his choice of guests from across the Middle East,
Turkey’s authoritarian prime minister left little doubt at his
ruling party congress as to which way his country was facing.

Former Ottoman territories and world Muslim capitals were
the focus of Tayyip Erdogan’s drawn-out greeting, and while
allies from Brazil to Japan got a brief mention, the European
Union, Turkey’s largest trading partner, was noticeably absent.

Sep 30, 2012

Turkish democracy is example for Muslim world-Erdogan

ANKARA, Sept 30 (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan
trumpeted Turkey’s credentials as a rising democratic power on
Sunday, saying his Islamist-rooted ruling party had become an
example to the Muslim world after a decade in charge.

Addressing thousands of party members and regional leaders
at a congress of his Justice and Development (AK) Party, Erdogan
said the era of military coups in the nation of 75 million
people was over.

Sep 30, 2012

Turkey’s Erdogan flaunts democratic credentials in Muslim world

ANKARA (Reuters) – Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan trumpeted Turkey’s credentials as a rising democratic power on Sunday, saying his Islamist-rooted ruling party had become an example to the Muslim world after a decade in charge.

Addressing thousands of party members and regional leaders at a congress of his Justice and Development (AK) Party, Erdogan said the era of military coups in the nation of 75 million people was over.

Sep 17, 2012

Turkey must reach “mutual” truce to end Kurdish conflict: party

ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey’s main Kurdish party said on Monday that Turkey must agree a mutual ceasefire with Kurdish separatists to have any hope of ending their conflict, rather than making one-sided demands that they disarm.

Turkey has seen a dramatic rise in violence over the past year with Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) insurgents launching more and more brazen attacks, including suicide bombings and kidnappings, which have in turn drawn a harsh military response.

Jul 25, 2012

Siege broken, life stirs in Syrian ghost town

AZAZ, Syria (Reuters) – For seven days 53-year-old Walid Murai was holed up in his house with his wife and children in his hometown of Azaz in northern Syria as rebel fighters battled to gain control of the town from President Bashar al-Assad’s forces.

With their food running low and tank fire skimming the roof of their two-storey home, Murai decided it was time to leave. He knocked a hole in his living room wall, gathered his wife and 12 children and led them through to his next-door neighbor’s home.

Jul 25, 2012

Syrian armored column closes in on Aleppo

AZAZ, Syria (Reuters) – The Syrian army turned its forces on Aleppo on Wednesday, ordering an armored column to advance on the country’s second biggest city and pounding rebels there with artillery and attack helicopters, opposition activists said.

As hostilities intensified near the Turkish border, Ankara said it was closing its crossing posts, although the United Nations said refugees fleeing Syria would be allowed through.

Jul 23, 2012

Syrian rebels emboldened after seizing border posts

BAB AL-SALAM, Syria (Reuters) – It took more than three weeks to reach it and cost the lives of 12 of his men, but when Abu Omar Dadikhi and his rebels finally marched through the Syrian border post separating their town from Turkey, the “Gate of Peace” fell without a fight.

For 24 days Dadikhi and his Free Syrian Army brigade, The Storm of the North, pushed slowly forward from their town of Azaz only five km (three miles) away, choking the supply lines to government troops before seizing the gate at dawn on Sunday.

Jul 23, 2012

Assad’s forces overrun two Damascus districts

BAB AL-SALAM, Syria (Reuters) – Syrian troops have driven rebel fighters out of two districts of Damascus a week after the insurgents launched a major assault on the capital.

Government troops retook control of the Damascus neighborhood of Mezzeh on Sunday and executed at least 20 unarmed men who they suspected of aiding rebels, opposition activists in the district said.

Jul 23, 2012

Assad brother’s forces overrun Damascus district

BAB AL-SALAM, Syria (Reuters) – Syrian troops commanded by the brother of President Bashar al-Assad and backed by helicopter gunships have driven rebel fighters out of a district of Damascus a week after the insurgents launched a major assault on the capital.

Members of the Syrian army’s Fourth Division under the command of Maher al-Assad, a feared hardliner, executed several young men during the operation to regain control of the northern Damascus district of Barzeh, a witness and activists said.

Jul 22, 2012

Syrian forces bombard Damascus, fight rages in Aleppo

BAB AL-SALAM, Syria (Reuters) – Syrian forces bombarded parts of Damascus with helicopter gunships on Sunday, witnesses said, driving rebels out of a northern district a week after opposition fighters launched a major assault on the capital.

Members of a Syrian army division under the command of President Bashar al-Assad’s brother summarily executed several young men, a witness and opposition activists said.