Deputy Bureau Chief Lebanon, Syria & Jordan
Mariam's Feed
Nov 17, 2014

U.S. hostage Peter Kassig is killed by Islamic State

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Islamic State militants have beheaded another American hostage, Peter Kassig, issuing a video claiming the killing on Sunday and warning the United States they would kill other U.S. citizens “on your streets.”

U.S. President Barack Obama confirmed the death of the aid worker in what he called “an act of pure evil by a terrorist group that the world rightly associates with inhumanity.”

Nov 16, 2014

Islamic State claims to have beheaded U.S. hostage Kassig

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Islamic State militants said in a video on Sunday they had beheaded U.S. hostage Peter Kassig and warned the United States they would kill other U.S. citizens “on your streets”.

The announcement of Kassig’s death, in what would be the fifth such killing of a Western captive by the group, formed part of a 15-minute video posted online in which Islamic State showed the beheadings of at least 14 men it said were pilots and officers loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Nov 4, 2014

Leader of Syria Qaeda wing threatens strikes against Hezbollah in Lebanon

BEIRUT (Reuters) – The leader of Syria’s al Qaeda rebel wing threatened attacks against the Shi’ite Muslim militant movement Hezbollah in Lebanon in coming days that he said would make it regret fighting alongside Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Lebanon hosts around a million refugees from Syria’s civil war and has seen violence spill over the border, with bombings in Beirut, fighting in the northern city of Tripoli, and rocket attacks on Bekaa Valley towns close to the frontier.

Nov 4, 2014

Hezbollah chief says ultra hardline Sunni militants will be defeated

BEIRUT (Reuters) – The leader of Hezbollah said on Tuesday his group was determined to battle ultra-hardline Sunni Muslims who seized land in Syria and Iraq and predicted they would be defeated across the region.

Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah also said his Lebanese Shi’ite group remained ready for any future war with Israel despite sending hundreds of fighters to support President Bashar al-Assad’s forces in neighboring Syria.

Nov 3, 2014

Iraqi Kurds join fight against Islamic State in Kobani

BEIRUT/MURSITPINAR Turkey (Reuters) – Iraqi Kurdish fighters have joined the fight against Islamic State militants in Kobani, hoping their support for fellow Kurds backed by U.S.-led air strikes will keep the ultra-hardline group from seizing the Syrian border town.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors the civil war, said heavy clashes erupted in Kobani and that both sides had suffered casualties, while the U.S. military said it had launched more air raids on Islamic State over the weekend.

Nov 2, 2014

Iraqi Kurds reinforce Kobani; U.S. planes pound Islamic State targets

BEIRUT/ BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Syrian Kurds welcomed the arrival in Kobani of Iraqi Kurdish fighters with their heavy weapons, hoping they might tip the balance in the battle to defend the town against Islamic State, as U.S.-led air strikes continued to bomb the ultra-hardline group in Iraq and Syria.

Air strikes have helped to foil several attempts by the al Qaeda offshoot, notorious for its beheading of hostages, to take over Kobani. But they have done little to stop its advances, in particular in Sunni areas of western Iraq, where it has executed hundreds of tribesmen.

Nov 1, 2014

Iraqi Kurds reinforce Kobani; U.S. planes pound IS targets

BEIRUT/ BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Syrian Kurds welcomed the arrival in Kobani of Iraqi Kurdish fighters with their heavy weapons, hoping they might tip the balance in the battle to defend the town against Islamic State, as U.S.-led air strikes continued to bomb the ultra-hardline group in Iraq and Syria.

Air strikes have helped to foil several attempts by the al Qaeda offshoot, notorious for its beheading of hostages, to take over Kobani. But they have done little to stop its advances, in particular in Sunni areas of western Iraq, where it has executed hundreds of tribesmen.

Nov 1, 2014

Kurdish peshmerga arrive with weapons in Syria’s Kobani

MURSITPINAR Turkey/BEIRUT (Reuters) – Iraqi Kurdish forces arrived in the Syrian town of Kobani with heavy weapons to help Syrian Kurds fend off attempts by Islamic State insurgents to seize the town and cement control in the Turkish border region.

Syrian Kurdish fighters welcomed the fighters who are known as peshmerga or “those who defy death”, and said that with the weapons they had brought with them, they could help tip the balance in a battle raging for more than 40 days.

Nov 1, 2014

Al Qaeda group seizes bastion of Western-backed rebels in Syria’s Idlib region

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Islamist militants affiliated to al Qaeda seized the last remaining stronghold of Western-backed rebels in Syria’s northwest province of Idlib on Saturday after days of fighting, rebels and a monitoring group said.

Backed by other hardline Islamist groups, the Nusra Front are waging a major military campaign against the Syria Revolutionaries’ Front led by Jamal Maarouf, a key figure in the armed opposition to President Bashar al-Assad, after accusing him of being corrupt and working for the West against them.

Oct 23, 2014

Lebanese central bank plans $1 billion stimulus for 2015: governor

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Lebanon is planning a $1 billion economic stimulus package for 2015 to maintain growth and support an economy which has been hit by a three-year conflict in neighboring Syria, the central bank governor said.

Riad Salameh said he hoped the fresh round of stimulus, which follows $800 million in aid this year, will result in economic growth of at least 2 percent next year. The IMF in May forecast Lebanon’s economy to grow by 2 percent this year.

    • About Mariam

      "Currently based in Beirut, Lebanon. Have done stints in Cairo and Dubai.Have been Reuters Deputy Bureau chief in Iraq from 2005-2008. Have also worked in london on several desks including equities and energy. Currently my responsibilities are: Run the cluster while bureau chief is away. Anchor stories from Amman and Damascus when required Write wraps, trunks and analyses Conduct interviews with major political and financial players Ensure Reuters News dominates top stories, timings and exclusives"
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