Samia's Feed
Jun 6, 2013

Hezbollah’s Syria victory risks wider Sunni-Shi’ite conflict

BEIRUT (Reuters) – The capture of Qusair by Syrian troops spearheaded by Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shi’ite Islamist militia, risks turning the war in Syria into a wider sectarian battle between Sunni and Shi’ite forces that will sweep through the country’s neighbors.

The fall of the town after weeks of fighting has emboldened the Syrian government and left the rebels contemplating their biggest defeat in a two-year-old war that has killed 80,000.

Apr 30, 2013

Running the gauntlet: delivering food in Syria

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – Aid workers in Syria are struggling to navigate a lawless archipelago of armed groups to get food to Syrians trapped in a fast-intensifying civil war, the head of the World Food Programme’s Syria operation says.

Matthew Hollingworth said in an interview last week that WFP is trying to feed 2.5 million people every month inside Syria – a tenth of the population – and a million outside, in a conflict that has left 70,000 dead.

Apr 28, 2013

Insight: Good life goes on as Syrian elite sit out war

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – It might sound absurd to talk about normal life in Syria after two years of civil war which have killed more than 70,000 people and left five million more destitute and homeless.

Yet in the neighborhood of Malki, a tree-lined enclave of central Damascus, a wealthy group of elite, pro-government Syrians still enjoy shopping for imported French cheeses, gourmet hand-made chocolates and iPad minis in the well-stocked, recently built Grand Mall and in nearby boutiques.

Apr 28, 2013

Good life goes on as Syrian elite sit out war

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – It might sound absurd to talk about normal life in Syria after two years of civil war which have killed more than 70,000 people and left five million more destitute and homeless.

Yet in the neighbourhood of Malki, a tree-lined enclave of central Damascus, a wealthy group of elite, pro-government Syrians still enjoy shopping for imported French cheeses, gourmet hand-made chocolates and iPad minis in the well-stocked, recently built Grand Mall and in nearby boutiques.

Apr 25, 2013

Syria says backing rebels risks new attacks on America

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – U.S. support for Syrian rebels may lead to more attacks on American soil like those of September 11, said a senior Syrian official who warned that Islamist fighters would spread “the fire of terrorism” around the world.

Western powers are alarmed at al Qaeda militants joining a revolt that began two years ago with rallies for democracy and President Bashar al-Assad has seized on that unease; now, 10 days after the Boston Marathon bombings, Syria’s deputy foreign minister told Reuters that U.S. aid to the rebels may backfire.

Apr 24, 2013

Syria expects more financial aid from Russia, Iran

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – Syria hopes to clinch more financial aid from its allies Russia and Iran soon, but still has enough foreign reserves to pursue its war on rebels trying to oust President Bashar al-Assad, the central bank governor said.

Speaking at the bank’s headquarters, hit by a car bomb on April 8, Adeeb Mayaleh said: “We are expecting much more support from friendly countries… Yes, financial support from Iran and Russia and it could also be from other friendly countries.

Mar 12, 2013

Fearful Syrian voters will keep Assad in power: Qassem

BEIRUT (Reuters) – President Bashar al-Assad is likely to run for re-election next year and win, with Syria remaining in military and political deadlock until then, said the deputy leader of Lebanon’s Iranian-backed Hezbollah group.

Sheikh Naim Qassem, who predicted a year ago that Assad would not be dislodged from power, said the Syrian leader would win a vote because his supporters understood that their communities’ very existence depended on him.

Mar 11, 2013

Lebanon says world must shoulder Syrian refugee burden

BEIRUT (Reuters) – President Michel Suleiman called on Monday for international action to help Lebanon cope with a deluge of refugees from the war in neighboring Syria which he said threatened to set his volatile country ablaze.

In an interview with Reuters at the presidential palace overlooking Beirut – and just 25 miles from the Syrian-Lebanese border – Suleiman compared Syria’s civil war to a conflagration breaking out next door.

Feb 13, 2013

Insight: Divided Damascus confronted by all-out war

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – MiG warplanes roar low overhead to strike rebels fighting to oust President Bashar al-Assad on the fringes of Damascus, while artillery batteries pound the insurgents from hills overlooking a city divided between all-out war and a deceptive calm.

Whole families can be obliterated by air raids that miss their targets. Wealthy Syrians or their children are kidnapped. Some are returned but people tell grim tales of how others are tortured and dumped even when the ransom is paid.

Jan 30, 2013

Insight: Egypt is once again risking its future

CAIRO (Reuters) – With violence sweeping Egypt’s cities and the economy lurching deeper into crisis, each passing day is adding new bricks to a wall of mistrust between the Islamist-led government of President Mohamed Mursi and a fractured secular opposition.

Two years after the revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak, Egypt, the epicenter of the upheavals reshaping the Arab world, is once again dicing with its future.