Syria News Wire

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Entries from July 2009

America ends internet embargo on Syria

July 27th, 2009 · 3 Comments · Culture, Politics

The US is removing some of its sanctions on Syria, just months after the embargo was controversially renewed. Syria’s Ambassador to Washington, Imad Moustapha, says the block on computer equipment and internet downloads is being lifted. This part of the sanctions has been a source of anger for Syrian computer users. Moustapha says US officials […]

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The Damascus tourist takeover – part 1

July 20th, 2009 · 2 Comments · Travel

Syria is in the newspapers, it’s on the TV, it’s in the bookshops. Listen up Europeans, Damascus is the hot new weekend getaway. There has been a fifty per cent rise in package holidays from Europe over the past few years. The total number (which includes Arab tourists) was 1 million in 2001, with an […]

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Tough new laws for drivers

July 18th, 2009 · 2 Comments · Travel

Syria has a terrible history of road accidents (like this and this). Now it looks like the crackdown has finally begun. Speeding is one of the biggest causes of crashes, so speed cameras have been installed on highways in Aleppo and now Damascus too. It follows the enforcement of the seatbelt laws – drivers and […]

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Moving Damascus?

July 17th, 2009 · 7 Comments · Culture

There are discussions about moving the capital away from Damascus – and building a whole new city near Homs. The IWPR says it is one of a number of ideas to reduce congestion in Damascus by taking Syria’s political and administrative away from the city. The new capital would be in the town of Hasiaa, […]

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Free English classes for children

July 13th, 2009 · No Comments · Culture

Run by the British Council, there is going to be an afternoon of English langauge fun this Friday. It’s happening in Tishreen Park at 4pm (Umayed Square gate) as part of the British Council’s 75th birthday celebrations. Earlier in the year they planted 75 naranj trees in the park.

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Could it really be? (updated)

July 11th, 2009 · 2 Comments · Culture

Him? UPDATE: Looks like another false alarm! This person has a few friends from the Zionist state (thanks Yaman). I couldn’t see that because he doesn’t want to be friends with me! Move along now, nothing to see here.

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Remembering Gaza – six months on

July 10th, 2009 · No Comments · Politics

Six months ago, the people of Gaza were subject to almost a month’s worth of brutal and non-stop unprovoked attacks by air, sea and land. This post pays tribute to them, and reminds the world that silence is not an option. Six months ago, the streets of London were filled with protestors – marching across […]

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Massive new hotel development next to the Old City

July 9th, 2009 · 2 Comments · Travel

A three-hundred-room Holiday Inn hotel is being built next to the Old City. It will be the first international chain to be built so close to the city centre – the others (Four Seasons, Meridian/Dedeman and Sheraton) are all on the Mezzeh Autostrad. You’d need a taxi to get anywhere. The company building the hotel […]

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Sexy Brit bringing Syria in from the cold

July 8th, 2009 · 8 Comments · Media

And just who is the ‘Sexy Brit‘? Asma Al-Assad, of course. This story tells me two things: first the Syrian government is finally realising the power of Asma to rebrand Syria’s image in the West. And second, it speaks volumes of the Sun’s cheap racism. The Sun is Britain’s biggest newspaper, read by 3 million […]

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Speed cameras in Damascus

July 8th, 2009 · No Comments · Travel

Speed cameras are being installed along the city’s three main highways: Mezzeh, Adawi and the Airport Road. They will take photos of any car driving above the speed limit (60 kilometres per hour) and penalties can be sent directly to the registered owner. It is hoped the cameras can finally sort out Syria’s terrible speeding […]

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