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Entries from February 2006

Ambassadors return to Syria

February 26th, 2006 · 2 Comments · Uncategorized

The Danish Ambassador who left Damascus when the embassy was set alight three weeks ago is on his way back to Syria. At the time, he said that he wasn’t leaving for political reasons, but because Syria wasn’t doing enough to guarantee his security. The Embassy was set on fire by an angry mob protesting […]

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Syrian opposition says ‘no’ to US offer of money

February 23rd, 2006 · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

Syria’s opposition umbrella, the Damascus Declaration, says it wont accept any money from the US. The bloc, which was signed by some of the country’s top opposition leaders (Riyad Sayf (left), Jawdat Said, Samir Al-Nashar, Kurdish groups and civil society advocates), set out their vision for Syria’s future late last year, calling for “democratic and […]

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Lebanon accuses Syria of hijacking their mobile network

February 21st, 2006 · 5 Comments · Uncategorized

That most precious of Lebanon’s natural resources is being attacked by Syria, according to Telecoms Minister Marwan Hamedeh. Lebanon has the highest mobile usage in the world – more minutes per person than in any other country. And now Lebanon says Syria wants to get a bite of that apple. Hamadeh says Syria has pointed […]

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America gives $5 million to the anti-Syrian government opposition – who’ll win the prize?

February 19th, 2006 · 6 Comments · Uncategorized

Washington has earmarked $5 for “accelerating the work of reformers”. They want to give the cash to opposition groups. But they might have a hard time finding someone who’ll accept their money. Riad At-Turk (left) has already ruled out working with the Bush government. The Muslim Brotherhood is seen as an Al-Qaida wing by the […]

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Amnesty International: Most Syrians arrested for the Beirut embassy burning weren’t even in Beirut at the time

February 18th, 2006 · 9 Comments · Uncategorized

Amnesty International has made the astonishing claim that most of the Syrians accused of involvement in the Beirut riots weren’t even in Beirut at the time of the attacks. It explains the high number of Syrians arrested (138 out of 400). Anti-Syrian politicians – Walid Jumblatt in particular – pointed to the arrests of Syrians […]

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More wild claims in As Siyasseh

February 18th, 2006 · 3 Comments · Uncategorized

Why does every story in As Siyasseh newspaper only quote ‘close and very personal sources’. Why do they never name names. Could it be because most are unsubstantiated pieces of gossip – or worse, stories dreamt up in the newsroom? I have thought for many months about starting a ‘Siyasseh Watch’, where I will track […]

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Plea for information about ‘the disappeared’ Syrians in Lebanon

February 17th, 2006 · 4 Comments · Uncategorized

The Lebanese government’s Human Rights minister has been given a list of Syrians missing in his country. Syrian families want to know what’s happened to their sons – it’s feared many are languishing in Lebanese jails or were killed by militias. It’s not clear how many there are. Most were soldiers and civilians captured during […]

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Mamoun Homsi and Riad Seif arrested – and freed

February 16th, 2006 · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

Former MPs and opposition activists Mamoun Homsi and Riad Seif (below) were arrested today. They have since been released. The pair were released last month after spending five years in jail. Seif recently returned from Paris where he met the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood leader. It’s unclear why either of the men were arrested, but it’s […]

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Syrians turn back on hostile Lebanon rally

February 15th, 2006 · 4 Comments · Uncategorized

Excellent article by Khaled Yacoub Oweis. Some highlights: “They say they want the truth about Hariri but don’t care if their alliance with America ruins Syria.” “They are the same Lebanese politicians who used to bow for our officials. They were agents then and are still agents now, but to Western and Zionist masters.” “Forty […]

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2005: millions march in Beirut. 2006: thousands march in Beirut

February 15th, 2006 · No Comments · Uncategorized

Organisers of today’s march in Beirut are coming to terms with a disappointing turn-out, one year on from Rafiq Hariri’s death. Last year, millions marched on the capital in support of their slain leader. This year, a couple of hundred thousand went on to the city’s streets. But it was more of a rejection of […]

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