Syria

‘Syrians want to take on Israel’, says Assad

By Zoe Winograd, May 31, 2013

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has told a Lebanese TV station that there is popular support for opening up a new front against Israel.

In an interview with Al-Manar television, Mr Assad said: “There is pressure by the people to open a new front in the Golan, and even in the Arab world there is readiness to join the fight against Israel.”

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Hizbollah risking Lebanon to keep Assad

By Anshel Pfeffer, May 30, 2013

Hassan Nasrallah was once considered the most credible leader in the
Middle East.

Supporters and enemies of Hizbollah’s secretary-general knew that his threats were credible, his denials accurate and that, by contrast with the high-blown rhetoric of the region, he usually meant what he said.

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As world scraps over which Syrian army to back, it’s lose-lose for Israel

By John R Bradley, May 30, 2013

The decision by EU foreign ministers not to renew an arms embargo on the “moderate” Syrian opposition was predictably celebrated by Foreign Minister William Hague this week as “the outcome that the United Kingdom wanted”.

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Putin arms sale threatens meltdown in Middle East

By Anshel Pfeffer, May 30, 2013

The civil war in Syria threatened to escalate beyond its borders this week with the confirmation that Russia will supply Bashar al-Assad’s government with advanced S-300 anti-aircraft missiles. The new weapons are said to be capable of shooting down aircraft in Israeli airspace.

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Israel condemns Russian missile shipment to Syria

By Zoe Winograd, May 28, 2013

Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister has confirmed that Moscow will provide Syria with defence missiles.

Sergei Ryabkov told the press today that Russia plans to ship long-range S-300 air defence missiles to Syria in order to prevent foreign intervention by “hotheads”.

Israeli Minister of Intelligence, International Relations and Strategic Affairs Yuval Steinitz condemned the deal.

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Iranian troops are fighting in Syria, says US

By Anshel Pfeffer, May 24, 2013

The US State Department finally acknowledged this week what has been common knowledge in the Middle East for months — that the Syrian civil war has become a conflict between regional and global players in which foreign fighters and proxies are playing a growing role.

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Jordan and Israel 'as one' over Syria and Iran attack

By Stephen Pollard, May 23, 2013

A senior Jordanian official has confirmed that the Hashemite Kingdom is allowing the Israelis to fly unmanned drones over its air space as part of the Israeli monitoring of the situation in Syria.

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Israeli military chief warns Syria of 'consequences' over attacks

By Zoe Winograd, May 22, 2013

Israeli military’s chief of staff Lieutenant General Benny Gantz has warned Syria’s President Bashar Al-Assad that he will “bear the consequences” if Syria continues to attack Israel.

Lt Gen Gantz told an audience at Haifa University on Tuesday: “We will not allow the area of the Golan Heights to become a comfortable place for Mr Assad.”

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Israel and Syria exchange fire in the Golan Heights

By Marcus Dysch, May 21, 2013

Israeli and Syrian forces have exchanged fire in the Golan Heights in the latest in a series of incidents on the border.

The Syrian army claimed it had destroyed an IDF jeep that it said had infiltrated into Syrian territory in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

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‘The arms will be pointed at Israel sooner or later’

By Anshel Pfeffer, May 9, 2013

When a window of opportunity presented itself last weekend to prevent Hizbollah and jihadist fighters in Syria from acquiring strategic and chemical weapons, Israel acted.

The destruction of a missile depot and chemical weapons sites came after intelligence reports indicated that rapid action was imperative.

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