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UN Human Rights Council vote
2014.09.27 01:08:57

The UN Human Rights Council has voted overwhelmingly to share its evidence of Syrian atrocities in hopes it will be forwarded to the world's war crimes tribunal.

By a vote of 32-5, with 10 abstentions, the 47-nation council adopted the resolution on Thursday strongly condemning lack of cooperation by President Bashar al-Assad's government with a UN commission investigating alleged rights violations since March 2011 in Syria, whether by the government or the opposition or the Islamic State group that controls broad areas along the Syria-Iraq border.

The resolution emphasizes that The Hague-based International Criminal Court can play an "important role" if the United Nations agrees to send it the commission's findings on war crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly being committed in Syria.


Tags: Syria

Hits: 1013 |

Oil refineries held by the ISIL
2014.09.26 01:49:10

Jets from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates played the leading role in the latest round of air strikes in Syria against fighters from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, the Pentagon said.

Ten warplanes from the two Arab states flew with six US aircraft in Wednesday's raids on oil refineries held by the ISIL group and 80 percent of the bomb tonnage delivered by the Saudi and UAE planes, spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby told reporters.


Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States | Saudi Arabia | UAE

Hits: 1215 |

Civilians killed in US-led air strikes
2014.09.26 01:47:45

The Pentagon said it will investigate reports that civilians were killed in US-led air strikes in Syria this week but insisted the raids were carried out with precision.

The US military said its bombing raids this week were carefully calibrated to avoid civilian casualties and touted the role of coalition partners from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in the latest strikes carried out on Wednesday.

"We don't have credible operational reports" that civilians were killed in three days of air strikes, spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby told reporters. But "we are taking a look at that," Kirby said, describing the media reports and video as "allegations."


Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States

Hits: 1446 |

Bombings in Syria and Iraq
2014.09.26 01:39:55

The Pentagon says it is too early to say that the US-led coalition was "winning" against the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, pointing to the group's continued access to financing, volunteers and weapons even after bombings in Syria and Iraq.

"Your question gets at ... How do you know you're winning? And what I'm telling you is, it's going to take us a while to be able to say that," Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby told reporters.

"Even after the hits they've taken and they have been hit they still have financing at their fingertips. They still have plenty of volunteers. They still have plenty of weapons and vehicles and the ability to move around," he said.


Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States | Iraq

Hits: 1284 |

Air strike by the US-led coalition
2014.09.26 01:38:22

This video purports to show an air strike by the US-led coalition on the town of Albu Kamal on the Iraqi border.

Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States | Iraq

Hits: 1186 |

Regime drops barrel bombs
2014.09.26 01:36:43

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says Syria's air force has dropped barrel bombs in the countryside north of Homs city. Further north Syrian helicopters used barrel bombs on a village outside Hama and warplanes bombed areas in the northern countryside of Latakia province, the Observatory said.

Tags: Syria

Hits: 1167 |

Threat from Dutch fighter in #Syria
2014.09.26 01:26:58

Dutch soldiers have been told not to wear uniforms on public transport, a defense ministry spokeswoman said, after a Dutch man fighting in Syria called for attacks in the Netherlands.

"Last night we advised military personnel not to travel in uniform on public transport," Marloes Visser told AFP. "There have been several statements made earlier this week which we are monitoring," she said.

On Tuesday, a Dutch fighter calling himself Muhajiri Shaam called for action against the Netherlands following US air strikes. Shaam called in an online video for others to "stand up and carry out a strong, firm act against the Dutch state" for "supporting the United States". Speaking in Dutch, Shaam said he made the video in Aleppo, where he has joined the Nusra Front, state broadcaster NOS said.

Tags: Syria | Islamic State | Netherlands

Hits: 1283 |

Video from Houla
2014.09.26 01:25:25

This video from Houla, Homs province, shows another protest against the US-led air strikes.

Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States

Hits: 1023 |

Raids in Arsal confirmed
2014.09.26 01:07:35

According to the head of military intelligence in Lebanon's Bekaa, the army has carried out several raids inside Arsal. He confirms the raid on an informal refugee settlement reported further down on this blog and the detention of less than 100 Syrian men suspected of involvement in attacks against the Lebanese army.

He says skirmishes broke out among Syrians after the raid - related to some men's involvement in attacks and the consequences for other Syrians now feeling persecuted.

Tags: Syria | Lebanon

Hits: 1140 |

French fighter jets struck targets in Iraq
2014.09.26 01:06:34

French fighter jets struck targets in Iraq this morning, government spokesman Stephane Le Foll says. The strikes were the first by French jets since September 19 when Paris joined the US military action against ISIL.

Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | France

Hits: 1148 |

Update from the Turkish-Syrian border
2014.09.26 01:00:41

About 150,000 Kurds have fled to Turkey since fighting around Kobane (Ain al-Arab in Arabic) began last week. Some of the men have returned to fight against ISIL and around 400 people. mostly men, are now waiting on the Turkish side to cross back to Kobani. About 300 others are waiting on the Syrian side to cross into Turkey.

Tags: Syria | Islamic State | Turkey

Hits: 1090 |

Sanctions against Russia
2014.09.26 00:59:22

Ukraine's prime minister has urged countries not to lift sanctions against Russia until his country regains control over its entire territory, including Crimea.

Ending a day of intense discussions over the growing global threat of extremist groups, Arseniy Yatsenyuk told the annual UN General Assembly of world leaders that "we know what terrorism means".

He demanded that Russia pull back its forces from eastern Ukraine, "stop the supply of Russian-led terrorists'' and start "real talks, peace talks."'

The months-long fighting between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian forces has been another major theme of speeches at the global assembly this week.


Tags: Ukraine | Russia | Crimea

Hits: 1836 |

Car bombs in Mahmoudiyah
2014.09.26 00:58:02

A police source says that 13 people were killed after two consecutive car bombs blew up this morning in the mixed city of Mahmoudiyah, south of Baghdad.

The first bomb targeted the city council building, killing seven and injuring other 13. The second one blew up near Mahmoudiyah hospital, killing six and injuring nine.

Tags: Iraq

Hits: 1006 |

Clashes continue around Kobane
2014.09.26 00:38:48

Activists from the Kurdish PYD party in Kobane say the town is in danger as ISIL fighters are around 2km away and clashes are ongoing.

ISIL now controls 75 percent of the Kobane region and PYD only controls Kobane town, the smaller town of Shera and around 15 villages.

The activists say Kurdish YPG fighters, collaborating with some Free Syrian Army groups, are pushing ISIL back on the eastern side of the town while other groups of YPG in Hasakah province are attacking the ISIL-held border town of Tal Abyad in an attempt to link Kobane to the Kurdish-majority region.

However, the lack of heavy weaponry prevents the YPG and allied forces from advancing or repelling ISIL.

Tags: Syria | Islamic State

Hits: 1006 |

Interpol set up a new program
2014.09.26 00:37:37

Interpol has set up a new program to improve its sharing of information about foreign fighters who have traveled to fight in Iraq and Syria, US authorities has said.

The program is aimed at better monitoring and limiting the international movement of such fighters, the US Department of Justice said.


Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | United States

Hits: 1100 |

Ukraine's sovereign dollar bonds bounced
2014.09.26 00:35:45

Ukraine's sovereign dollar bonds bounced by about two cents across the curve after NATO said a "significant" withdrawal of Russian forces from inside Ukraine had been observed.

The bonds had fallen sharply as Ukraine's dire economic position prompted investors to start pricing in restructuring of the debt.

But markets were heartened by news of the troop withdrawal and by a finance ministry announcement that it planned to repay a maturing bond from state energy firm Naftogaz in full.


Tags: Ukraine | Russia | NATO

Hits: 1804 |

Arsal refugee settlement raided
2014.09.26 00:24:49

Lebanese army raided an informal camp for Syrian refugees inside Arsal this morning on suspicion that rebels were residing in camp, a security source says. A shootout between army and fighters resulted in the burning of a part of the camp which women and children reside in.

One Syrian fighter was killed and several others wounded. They were suspected of involvement in recent attacks on the army, according to the source.

Several Syrians were arrested.

The Nusra Front and ISIL-affiliated rebels are holding 22 Lebanese soldier and officers. One of the groups' demands to release the troops is the protection of Syrian refugees.

Tags: Syria | Lebanon | Islamic State

Hits: 1170 |

ISIL fighters killed
2014.09.26 00:16:14

At least 14 ISIL fighters were killed in air strikes by US-led forces overnight in northeast Syria, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

The strikes also killed at least five civilians, said Observatory director Rami Abdulrahman.


Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States

Hits: 1182 |

#Qatar urged the international community to confront the Syrian regime
2014.09.26 00:06:19

Qatar urged the international community to confront the Syrian regime, highlighting pressure by some of Washington's Gulf Arab allies to widen its campaign against the self-declared jihadist Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL) group.

Qatar is among five Arab nations including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan and Bahrain that joined in or supported US-led airstrikes against ISIL targets in Syria beginning late on Monday. US officials said Qatar's role consisted mostly of logistical support.

"The war of genocide being waged and the deliberate displacement carried out by the regime remain the major crime," Qatar's ruler, Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, told the UN General Assembly in New York.

The US has said its military campaign will not target the Syrian government and instead will focus on the ISIL, which has seized a third of both Iraq and Syria and seeks to establish a caliphate in the Middle East.


Tags: Syria | Islamic State | Qatar

Hits: 1139 |

Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm John Kirby
2014.09.25 04:53:11

US Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm John Kirby has just said:

I can confirm that U.S. military and Arab partner forces are undertaking additional strikes today against ISIL terrorists in Syria. These operations are ongoing, so we will not provide additional details at this time. We will do so later as operationally appropriate.

Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States

Hits: 1305 |

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Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Israeli settlements


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