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Entries from August 2009

Syria on the verge of becoming football champions

August 31st, 2009 · 4 Comments · Culture

Tonight is the night. Syria play India in the Nehru Cup final. The Syrian team – despite fasting during all of their games – have made it into the final without conceding a single goal. They seem unstoppable. But there is history here. Syria played India in the 2007 final – and lost. Things look […]

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Syria Towers – massive new development in Baramkeh

August 26th, 2009 · 12 Comments · Culture

One of Syria’s biggest building projects has just been unveiled: Syria Towers.The $300 million complex will house a five-star hotel, offices, apartments, a shopping centre, restaurants, cinemas plus parking space. It will sit on the empty plot of land at Baramkeh – where the international bus and taxi station used to be, before it outgrew […]

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Syria and Iraq recall ambassadors

August 26th, 2009 · 2 Comments · Politics

Syria has recalled its ambassador to Baghdad after Iraq did the same, in protest at a series of bombings. Iraq is accusing Syria of sheltering former Iraqi Baath Party leaders who masterminded attacks which killed 100 people. Earlier this week, Iraqi state TV broadcast Saddam-style televised confessions, where the ‘bombers’ admitted a Syria connection. One […]

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The Libya hypocrisy

August 22nd, 2009 · 8 Comments · Politics

A dying man, who is probably innocent, is released from prison to spend his last weeks with his family. The civilised world cries foul. In 2001 Abdelbaset Al-Megrahi was convicted of 270 counts of murder, following the 1988 bombing of a PanAm flight over Lockerbie in Scotland. With three months to live, the Scottish Minister […]

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Syria favourites to win football contest

August 21st, 2009 · 4 Comments · Culture

Syria are being called favourites to win football’s Nehru Cup. The country hasn’t won an international competition since the 1987 Mediterranean Cup when Syria beat France (thanks Anas – hanging my head in shame!). But Syria is the only top 100 team in this contest. The Nehru Cup is a competition hosted by India, and played every […]

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Damascus photo exhibition

August 20th, 2009 · 5 Comments · Culture

‘Bridging the Gap’ brings new Damascene photographers together in one exhibition. It’s taking place in the beautiful Dar Al Funun from today until Tuesday. Dar Al Funun is in Qanawat, in the centre of Damascus, behind the Palace of Justice.

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Falafel stories – part 2

August 20th, 2009 · 8 Comments · Culture

It is turning into an obsession. After my first experience of Mr Falafel (the one I felt the urge to write about), I was left floating on a cloud, unable to think about anything apart from my snack earlier in the afternoon. So of course, the following day necessitated a second visit. I was taking […]

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The world’s best falafel

August 18th, 2009 · 13 Comments · Culture

It’s an ambitious title. And no, it’s not in Damascus. It’s in London. This post is dedicated to Kano – the Syrian foodie in London. This post, and today’s culinary treat, would not have happened, if it wasn’t for this. Maysaloon has also talked-up this little London falafel hut. As has the Guardian. Mr Falafel is […]

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Nasrallah speech

August 15th, 2009 · 9 Comments · Lebanon

Hizbollah’s leader Hasan Nasrallah has given an impassioned speech to huge crowds. It marks the third anniversary of the end of Israel’s 2006 massacre on Lebanon. The big message was this: if Israel tries something like that again, the response will be even more tough. Attack Beirut and we will attack Tel Aviv, he said. […]

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A government for all the people

August 2nd, 2009 · 6 Comments · Commentary, Lebanon

As Lebanon moves closer to announcing its unity cabinet, a lot of people are complaining about the length of time it has taken to get this far. It is now eight weeks since the most hotly fought elections in Lebanon’s history. The ruling March 14 coalition held on to power – winning by 55% to 45%. It was […]

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