Lebanon & Syria

January 15, 2014

Syria's deputy foreign minister Faisal Mekdad would not say which countries' intelligence organizations contacted Syria. (AFP/File)
15:40 GMT

Syrian deputy foreign minister Faisal Mekdad on Wednesday said that Western intelligence services - aka spies - who are opposed to President Bashar Assad have visited Damascus in a bid to discuss security cooperation with the government.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif talks to the press in Amman before his departure to Damascus.  [AFP]
09:12 GMT

The foreign minister of Iran arrived in Damascus on Wednesday to meet President Bashar al-Assad.

Syrian youths gather to receive aid food in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on January 14, 2014. [AFP]
05:13 GMT

In a war torn region that has killed over 100,000 people, Gulf State officials announce that NGO's have pledged a combined $400 million in humanitarian aid funding.

January 14, 2014

An Iranian diplomat was killed during the November bombing in Beirut (File Archive/AFP)
19:19 GMT

Lebanese security forced arrested a Palestinian man who is allegedly involved in November 2013's Iranian embassy bomb attack in Beirut

Arsal has been a frequent target of Syrian spillover attacks (File Archive)
17:16 GMT

Fourteen rockets from Syria hit the northeastern town of Arsal Tuesday.

Residents gather at the site of a bomb attack in Basra. [AFP]
13:03 GMT

Eight Syrian rebels are dead after an ISIS backed car bomb detonated in Idlib.

Islamist rebels kidnapped a group of nuns from the Greek Orthodox monastery of St Thecla in Maaloula north of Damascus. [wordpress]
08:59 GMT

The mayor of Arsal is committed to helping with the release of 13 nuns who were captured in Maaloula in December.

The United Nations has called on the EU to open its borders to Syrian refugees. (AFP/File)
08:22 GMT

The United Nations and the European Commission have urged the European Union to accept the temporary settlement of Syrian refugees inside the EU borders.

A picture taken on January 12, 2014, shows men trying to put out a fire in a buildings in the city of Daraya, southwest of the capital Damascus. [AFP]
05:52 GMT

Kuwait has entered a "distress call to citizens" in efforts to organize a national campaign to support Syrian relief efforts.

January 13, 2014

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said that it is imperative for all parties involved in the Syrian conflict to pursue a political solution to the conflict. (AFP/File)
18:41 GMT

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said Monday that pursuing diplomacy and a political solution is the only way to end the sprawling, nearly three-year-old Syrian civil war despite the difficulty of the upcoming Geneva talks.

Russia's Lavrov told reporters Tuesday that Iran and Saudi Arabia should take part in the upcoming Syrian peace talks scheduled for next week (Alain Jocard/AFP)
14:30 GMT

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met with Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Paris Monday to discuss a ceasefire plan for Syria.

Palestinian children carry a fake coffin as they take part in a sit-in on January 4, 2014 in Gaza city in solidarity with Palestinian children at Yarmouk refugee camp in Syria. (AFP)
09:12 GMT

Palestinian officials said Monday that efforts to break the Syrian siege on the Yarmouk refugee camp, where conditions are rapidly deteriorating due to a lack of basic supplies and medicines, had failed.

A handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) shows Syrian President Bashar al-Assad next to Syrian Grand Mufti Ahmed Hassun and Syrian Prime Minister Wael al-Halaqi attending prayers on the eve of the anniversary of the birth of Islam's Prophet Mohammed at the al-Hamad mosque in Damascus. [AFP]
06:00 GMT

Rarely seen in public, President Bashar Al-Assad made an appearance at a mosque in Damascus in honor of the Prophet Mohammed.

January 12, 2014

'Friends of Syria'  met with leaders of the mainstream opposition to President Bashar al-Assad ahead of peace talks due later this month. [AFP]
17:00 GMT

he U.S.-led “Friends of Syria” grouping had agreed that President Bashar al-Assad and his family will have no role in the country’s future, Ahmad Jarba, head of Syria’s opposition National Coalition, said during a press conference held in Paris on Sunday.

At least 130,000 people have died in Syria three-year war, but the UN has stopped tracking the death toll due to limited access to accurate data (Fadi Dirani/AFP)
11:52 GMT

United States Secretary State John Kerry along with ten other Western nation envoys reportedly have "raised the pressure" on one of Syria's main opposition groups to attend Swiss peace talks. Syrian President Bashar Al Assad's regime shelled the central city of Homs, killing 20.