ISIL withdraws from last east Aleppo stronghold

BEIRUT, LEBANON (2:10 P.M.) – Minutes ago, Al-Masdar News was informed that the Islamic State (ISIL) fully withdrew from their last east Aleppo stronghold: Deir Hafer.

According to Al-Masdar’s Yusha Yuseef, the Islamic State forces withdrew from Deir Hafer prior to being fully encircled this morning.

Yuseef added that the Syrian Arab Army has not yet entered Deir Hafer due to security concerns over the large presence of field mines.

Syrian and Russian sappers are expected to begin the demining phase of Deir Hafer this evening.

The liberation of Deir Hafer marks the first time in four years that the Syrian Arab Army has been in control of this strategic town in east Aleppo.

Related Videos

—-


—–

—–

Related Articles

The Political Scene: Trump’s Policy with Allies – Pay Us and We’ll Protect You

Source

March 23, 2017

U.S. President Donald Trump waits to speak by phone with the Saudi Arabia's King Salman in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 29, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

US president Donald trumps’ policies towards the region have not been crystallized so far.
Many of the political positions and statements announced by the new administration are not clear enough to give a full- fledge  image about the US vision towards the region. Most of the information and conclusions are inferred from tentative analyses and some of his advisors statements.

Nonetheless, the main headline of the US policy towards the friends and allies in the world generally, and the region specifically, “pay us and we will protect you.”

However, it is estimated that the new American policy will go in accordance with the following lines:
Washington will neither wage a war nor will it withdraw from the nuclear agreement with Iran, but will make sure to tighten the sanctions against it, to downsize its influence in many places in the region.

– The US administration intends to engage more in Iraq by deploying more troops there in an attempt to get rid of ISIL and to make sure to blackmail the Iraqis, thus pressuring them to give more political and economic concessions. Trump aspires to cut off Iraq from its current stances and annex it to the gulf states in an effort to terminate the Iranian influence and coordination with Baghdad.

– As for Palestine, Trump plans to hold an international conference to reach a so-called political settlement, or to hold a tripartite summit that brings him, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netenyahu and PA President Mahmoud Abbas together to reach what his administration envisages as  a permanent solution .

In Yemen, the US urges Saudi Arabia to put a speedy end to its heavy engagement in the Yemeni quick sands, as winning the war there has proved to be almost impossible, along with Saudi dwindling status that affects drastically in other areas which could be in turn detrimental to US interests.

As for Syria, Washington intends to involve itself more, especially in the northern part of the country where it has deployed more troops and military equipments and has supported the Kurdish forces with vital military supplies thus escalating the Turkish worries. The US plans to have the sole and upper hand in liberating Raqqa without any coordination with or help from Russia in order to strike a balance with the culminating, rather towering influence Moscow has in Syria.

Washington wants this at any rate because it deeply understands that the future situation in Syria will play a crucial role and determine the future of the region and far beyond that for long years.

Source: Al-Manar Website

The UK has made 10 times more in arms sales to Saudi Arabia than it’s given in aid to Yemen

Source

Similarly, the US sold a record amount of arms to Saudi Arabia under Obama’s administration, with sales set to continue under Trump. Earlier this month the State Department approved a resumption in the $300m sale of US-made precision-guided missiles, a deal blocked late in Obama’s administration due to concerns over civilian casualties

yemen-children.jpgUN humanitarian aid chief Stephen O’Brien looks at a child during a visit to the Mother and Child hospital in the Yemeni capital Sanaa Getty

Bustling, buzzing and bartering. That is how I would once have described a typical market (or souk) in Yemen.

Not any longer. These days they’re often barren and lifeless. During my many visits, I’ve seen the devastation of once busy souks destroyed by Saudi coalition airstrikes. Skeletal structures of buildings and stalls lie empty where once vibrant businesses sold coffee, spices, locally-grown fruits and vegetables, clothes and children’s toys.

By contrast, on the other side of the world a lucrative market in high-tech weaponry is positively thriving. Over the past two years, the UK and the US have sold billions of pounds’ worth of arms to Saudi Arabia, arms used to obliterate Yemeni markets and much else.

In Yemen, I’ve met countless victims of airstrikes who’ve lost loved ones or had livelihoods destroyed, leaving them impoverished and destitute. After two years of this, the country is facing a humanitarian disaster of epic proportions, with more than 18 million Yemenis requiring humanitarian assistance.

On the one hand, the UK and US have supported Yemen with around £371.5m in aid during the past two conflict-ridden years. On the other, British and American arms companies, with the authorisation of the UK and US governments, have busily supplied much of the weaponry that Saudi Arabia has used for its devastating attacks in its southern neighbour.

SAA foils attempts by al-Nusra mercenaries to break the siege imposed on terrorists north of Jobar

Source


(22/3/2017) ~ Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and Syrian Armed Forces units on Wednesday repelled attempts by terrorist groups to break the siege imposed on terrorists trapped in the textiles factories north of Jobar, at the eastern outskirts of Damascus city.



A military source said that army units repelled repeated attempts by Jabhat al-Nusra terrorists and groups affiliated to them to break the siege imposed on terrorist groups trapped in the textiles factories north of Jobar.

The source said that army units are engaged in violent clashes with terrorist groups north of Jobar, and that they are shelling the terrorists’ gatherings and movements in the depths of Jobar and surrounding areas.

The source added that the operations in Jobar resulted in the death of more than 150 terrorists, including foreigners and some of their leaders, in addition to injuring hundreds of them, destroying 3 car bombs, and killing 7 suicide bombers before they could reach army positions.

In the same context the Syrian Air Force carried out since dawn a number of airstrikes targeting the terrorists’ movements and supply routes coming from the Eastern Ghouta towards the north of Jobar neighborhood, inflicting heavy losses upon them in personnel.

The clashes continue between army units and terrorists that infiltrated the factories area on the northern outskirts of Jobar neighborhood on Tuesday, leaving many of their members dead and injured and destroying large amounts of their weapons and equipment.

Hama

A military source said that Syrian army units, in cooperation with supporting forces, foiled an attack by Jabhat al-Nusra terrorist organization and groups affiliated to it in the direction of Souran and Khattab in the northern countryside of Hama province.

The source also reported that Syrian army units engaged in fierce battles on the outskirts of Souran city and in the surroundings of Khattab town, inflicting heavy losses upon terrorists.


SOURCES:
Syrian News Agency
Submitted by SyrianPatriots
War Press Info Network at :
https://syrianfreepress.wordpress.com/2017/03/22/saa-jobar/
~

Related Articles
 

Syrian Army Regains Textile Factory in Northern Jobar in Damascus, Killing over 150 Terrorists

March 22, 2017

Regaining the textile factory in northern Jobar and killing over 150 terrorists, the Syrian army and allies on Wednesday repelled attempts by terrorist groups to break the siege imposed on the area.

A military source said that army units repelled repeated attempts by al-Nusra terrorists and groups affiliated to them to break the siege imposed on terrorist groups trapped in the textiles factories north of Jobar.

The source said that army units are engaged in violent clashes with terrorist groups north of Jobar, and that they are shelling the terrorists’ gatherings and movements in the depths of Jobar and surrounding areas.

The source added that the operations in Jobar resulted in the death of more than 150 terrorists, including foreigners and some of their leaders, in addition to injuring hundreds of them, destroying 3 car bombs, and killing 7 suicide bombers before they could reach army positions.

In the same context, SANA’s reporter said that the Syrian Air Force carried out since dawn a number of airstrikes targeting the terrorists’ movements and supply routes coming from the Eastern Gouta towards the north of Jobar neighborhood, inflicting heavy losses upon them in personnel.

The reporter said that clashes continue between army units and terrorists that infiltrated the factories area on the northern outskirts of Jobar neighborhood on Tuesday, leaving many of their members dead and injured and destroying large amounts of their weapons and equipment.

Hama

A military source said that army units, in cooperation with supporting forces, foiled an attack by al-Nusra terrorist organization and groups affiliated to it in the direction of Souran and Khattab in the northern countryside of Hama province.

Source: Al-Manar Website and SANA

Related Videos

Related Articles

Reality and the US-Made Famine in Yemen

Reality and the US-Made Famine in Yemen

 by Kathy Kelly

This week at the Voices for Creative Nonviolence office in Chicago, my colleague Sabia Rigby prepared a presentation for a local high school. She’ll team up with a young friend of ours, himself a refugee from Iraq, to talk about refugee crises driven by war. Sabia recently returned from Kabul where she helped document the young Afghan Peace Volunteers’ efforts to help bring warmth, food and education to internally displaced families living in makeshift camps, having fled the Afghan War when it raged near their former homes.

Last year Sabia had been visiting with refugees in “the Calais Jungle,” who were fleeing the Middle East and several African countries for Britain. Thwarted from crossing the English Channel, a large mass of people were stopped in this refugee camp in Calais, France, from which French authorities eventually evacuated them, defying their careful solidarity and burning their camp to the ground.

As part of her high school talk, Sabia prepared a handout to show where refugees are the most welcomed. One detail astonished her.

In FY 2016, the U.S. admitted 84,995 refugees, but Yemen, the poorest country in the Arab world took in 117,000 new refugees and migrants in 2016, and hosts more than 255,000 refugees from Somalia. Yemen is now beginning to host the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. What’s more, the country is regularly targeted by Saudi and US airstrikes.

Since we are also planning a week of fast and action related to the tragic circumstances Yemen faces, we were astounded when we realized Yemen is a path of escape for Somalis fleeing the Horn of Africa, refugees of one conflict, stranded in their flight, and trapped in a country where deadly conflict is precipitating into deadlier famine.

After years of US support for dictator Ali Adullah Saleh, civil war has wracked Yemen since 2014. Its neighbor Saudi Arabia, itself among the region’s cruelest dictatorships and a staunch US ally, became nervous in 2015 about the outcome and, with support from nine regional allies, began subjecting the country to a punishing barrage of airstrikes, and also imposed a blockade that ended the inflow of food and supplies to Yemen through a major port. This was accomplished with massive, ongoing weapons shipments from the US, which has also waged independent airstrikes that have killed dozens of civilians, including women and children.

Pummeled by airstrikes and fighting, facing economic collapse and on the brink of famine, how could this tiny, impoverished country absorb thousands upon thousands of desperate migrants?

Yemen imports 90% of its food. Because of the blockade, food and fuel prices are rising and scarcity is at crisis levels.

UNICEF estimates that more than 460,000 children in Yemen face severe malnutrition, and 3.3 million children and pregnant or lactating women suffer acute malnutrition. More than 10,000 people have been killed, including 1,564 children, and millions have been displaced from their homes, but worse is the groundwork laid for the far greater devastation of famine. Iona Craig, in the IRIN publication, recently wrote:

In the middle of a vast expanse of gray scrubland, a rapidly growing population of more than 120 families huddle under parched trees. Escaping the latest wave of conflict on Yemen’s Red Sea coast, they walked two days to get to this camp southwest of Taiz city.

But on arrival, the scores of women and children found nothing. No support from aid agencies. No food. No water. No shelter. The elderly talk of eating the trees to survive, while children beg for water from local farmers. A mother cradles her clearly malnourished baby in her arms.

Now comes word that on March 16th, forty-two Somali people were killed in sustained gunfire from the air as they set forth in a boat attempting to flee Yemen.

“I took cover in the belly of the ship,” said Ibrahim Ali Zeyad, a Somali who survived the attack. “People were falling left and right. Everyone kept screaming, ‘We are Somali! We are Somali!’”

But the shooting continued for what felt like half an hour.

The attack on Yemen traps both Yemenis and fleeing Somalis in the worst of four developing crises which collectively amount, one U.N. official warns, to the worst humanitarian crisis in the history of the UN As of this writing, no one has taken responsibility for the strike, but survivors say they were attacked by a helicopter gunship. The boat was carrying 140 people as it headed north off the coast of Yemen.

Meanwhile, US weapons makers, including General Dynamics, Raytheon, and Lockheed Martin, profit massively from weapon sales to Saudi Arabia. In December, 2017, Medea Benjamin wrote: “Despite the repressive nature of the Saudi regime, U.S. governments have not only supported the Saudis on the diplomatic front, but militarily. Under the Obama administration, this has translated into massive weapons sales of $115 billion.”

At this critical juncture, all member states of the UN must call for an end to the blockade and airstrikes, a silencing of all guns, and a negotiated settlement to the war in Yemen. The worst malefactors, the US and Saudi Arabia, must abandon cynical maneuvering against rivals like Iran, in the face of such an unspeakable human cost as Yemen is being made to pay.

US people bear responsibility to demand a radical departure from US policy which exacerbates the deadly tragedy faced by people living in Yemen.

Choosing a path of clear opposition to US policies toward Yemen, US citizens should demand elected representatives stop all drone attacks and military “special operations” within Yemen, end all US weapon sales and military aid to Saudi Arabia, and provide compensation to those who suffered losses caused by US attacks.

Our group of activists long functioned under the name “Voices in the Wilderness,” a campaign to defy US economic warfare against Iraq, a form of war through imposition of economic sanctions which directly contributed to the deaths of over 500,000 children. Lost in a culture of hostile unreality and unbearable silence concerning economic warfare, we were evoking, perhaps unconsciously, the plight of refugees seeking survival. We didn’t succeed in lifting the brutal economic sanctions against Iraq, but we surely learned harsh realities about how callous and reckless US policy makers could be.

We must ground ourselves in reality and in solidarity with the greater part of the world’s people. As our neighbors around the world flee in desperation across borders or within the confines of their own countries, we must continually educate ourselves about the reality of what our nation’s actions mean to the world’s poor. Building toward a time when our voices may unite and be heard, we must raise them now in crying out for the people of Yemen.

Kathy Kelly (kathy@vcnv.org) co-coordinates Voices for Creative Nonviolence.

Hot Syrian Spring ربيع سوري ساخن

 Hot Syrian Spring

مارس 20, 2017

Written by Nasser Kandil,

It was not a secret that Astana Path which was created by Moscow in an opportune moment for finding an alternative of the US absence from the tracks of making the political settlement for Syria, was due to the emergence of an opportunity of the qualitative Turkish cooperation after the defeat of Aleppo which has affected it and has affected the military militia forces which work under its sponsorship which are closer to Al Nusra front, and which the Russians have endeavored  to make the Americans taking over the responsibility of separating it but in vain. The opportunity came to make its original owner taking over the task; the Turkish is the shelter, the supply line of Al Nura, and the sponsor of the involved armed groups, but after Aleppo the Turkish lost the opportunity to fight a proxy war on Syria, and has lost the hope in the consequences of this war after the fall of the castle which was represented by Aleppo and the fall of its title under the name of the armed opposition. Furthermore the Euphrates Shield which the Turkish formed for the war on ISIS has become mere a refinery to accommodate the remaining of the formations which he sponsored to make from them Turkish security line that is similar to the line of the army of Antoine Lahd in favor of Israel in the southern of Lebanon before liberating the South.

The Russian equation was that the Turks would separate Al Nusra and the militias affiliated to them within the Euphrates Shield to fight ISIS, and the partnership in a track that leads to alternative important Syrian negotiator of the opposition of Riyadh, that is capable of going on toward a settlement entitled the partnership with Turkey in the war on terrorism in exchange of reserving a fixed Turkish seat in the new regional system, but the US slowdown in the cooperation with Russia has led to big Turkish regressions, then Manbej slap which neither Russia nor Syria were far from its making occurred to the Turks, in response of the Turkish deception in Al Bab city and the embarrassment to the American through a new equation that says the impossibility to combine between the alliance with the Kurds and the Turks, so the Russians cooperate with the Turkish once again and the Syrians cooperate with the Kurds.

Astana in its third version has taken place in order to tell the armed groups which the Turks claim their mono-authority on them that they are still a common investment among Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the Americans that proves its ability in affecting the settlement negatively. This means its boycotting of Astana despite the Turkish concern and presence, or to say that the Turkish is still practicing the manipulation and the deception waiting for the American, in both cases there is no justification for the continuation of the bet on Astana as a path.

The suicidal bombings which ravage in the Syrian areas and the silence of the armed and the political oppositions say that the bet on a political or security track that leads to dynamisms that develop by themselves is no longer present. The military initiative is at the hand of the Syrian country and its allies, and there is no justification to stop in front of the lie of considering the cease-fire a way for the political settlement, or considering that Turkey can or wants, or can and wants an independent path from the Americans in approaching the Syrian war. So the clarity becomes the answer; war on Al Nusra and those who stand with it along with a political path with a clear ceiling for who wants, here is Geneva without conditions including the cease-fire condition, those who become ready for a government under the Syrian constitution and the Syrian presidency can find a seat till the election decides their size, and those who do not want then let them reserve a seat in the field.

The postponement of Astana to May says that April will be a hot month, and that the next Geneva after a week will be cold and dull especially after it became clear the Saud Israeli encouragement of the Americans to separate the battle of ISIS in the northern of Syria from the war on the resistance and the Syrian army in the south, and the sufficiency with security settlements with the Russians in the north due to the necessities of the war on ISIS, and disabling every political settlement that legitimizes the cooperation with the Syrian country that restores its diplomatic presence and its economic movement just for the sake of the necessities of the war on the Syrian country and the resistance.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

 

ربيع سوري ساخن

مارس 17, 2017

ناصر قنديل

– لم يكن خافياً أن مسار أستانة الذي وجدته موسكو في لحظة مؤاتية لإيجاد بديل عن الغياب الأميركي عن مسارات صناعة التسوية السياسية الخاصة بسورية، جاء بفعل ظهور فرصة لتعاون تركي نوعي بعد هزيمة حلب التي أصابتها وأصابت معها القوى العسكرية الميليشياوية العاملة تحت عباءتها وغير البعيدة عن جبهة النصرة، والتي تعب الروس لجعل الأميركيين يتولّون مهمة فصلها عنها من دون طائل. وجاءت فرصة ان يتولى المهمة صاحبها الأصلي. فالتركي هو ملاذ النصرة وخط إمدادها وهو راعي الجماعات المسلحة المعنية. وقد فقد بعد حلب فرصة خوض حرب بالوكالة على سورية وفقد الأمل بنتائج هذه الحرب بعد سقوط القلعة التي مثلتها حلب وسقوط عنوانها باسم المعارضة المسلحة. وصار درع الفرات الذي شكّله للحرب على داعش، مجرد مصفاة لاستيعاب شتات التشكيلات التي رعاها ليجعل منها شريطاً أمنياً تركياً يشبه شريط جيش أنطوان لحد لحساب إسرائيل في جنوب لبنان قبل تحرير الجنوب.

– كانت المعادلة الروسية أن يقوم الأتراك بمهمة عزل النصرة وتجميع الميليشيات التابعة لهم ضمن درع الفرات لمقاتلة داعش، والشراكة بمسار ينتج مفاوضاً سورياً بديلاً وازناً عن معارضة الرياض قادراً على السير نحو تسوية عنوانها الشراكة مع تركيا في الحرب على الإرهاب، مقابل حجز مقعد تركي ثابت في النظام الإقليمي الجديد. وجاء التباطؤ الأميركي في التعاون مع روسيا لينتج تراجعات تركية كبيرة، ثم جاءت صفعة منبج للأتراك والتي لم تكن روسيا ولا سورية ببعيدتين عن صناعتها رداً على الخداع التركي في معركة الباب وإحراجاً للأميركي بمعادلة جديدة تقول باستحالة الجمع بين التحالف مع الأكراد والأتراك، فيمسك الروسي بيد التركي مجدداً ويمسك السوري بيد الأكراد.

– جاءت أستانة بنسختها الثالثة لتقول إن الجماعات المسلحة التي يدعي الأتراك سلطتهم الأحادية عليها، لا تزال استثماراً مشتركاً مع السعودية و»إسرائيل» والأميركيين، يثبت قدرته على التأثير لإعاقة التسويات. وهذا معنى مقاطعتها لأستانة رغم الاهتمام والحضور التركيين، أو لتقول إن التركي لا يزال يمارس التلاعب والخداع، بانتظار الأميركي، وفي الحالين لا مبرر لمواصلة الرهان على أستانة كمسار.

– التفجيرات الانتحارية التي تعصف بالمناطق السورية، وصمت المعارضات المسلحة والسياسية، يقولان إن الرهان على مسار سياسي أو أمني كمسار ينتج ديناميات تتطور بذاتها لم يعد له مكان، فالمبادرة العسكرية بيد الدولة السورية وحلفائها، ولا مبرر للتوقف أمام أكذوبة اعتبار وقف النار طريقاً للتسوية السياسية، ولا اعتبار أن تركيا تقدر أو تريد، أو تقدر وتريد، مساراً مستقلاً عن الأميركيين في مقاربة الحرب السورية، ولذلك يصير الوضوح هو الجواب، حرب على النصرة ومن يقف معها، ومسار سياسي بسقف واضح لمن يرغب وها هي جنيف موجودة، من دون شروط، بما فيها شرط وقف النار، فمن ينضج لسقف المشاركة بحكومة في ظل الدستور السوري والرئاسة السورية يجد له مقعداً حتى تقرر الانتخابات حجمه، ومن لا يريد فليحجز مقعده في الميدان.

– تأجيل أستانة لشهر أيار يقول إن نيسان سيكون شهراً ساخناً، وإن جنيف المقبل بعد أسبوع سيكون بارداً وباهتاً، خصوصاً مع ما بات واضحاً من تشجيع سعودي «إسرائيلي» للأميركيين لفصل معركة داعش في شمال سورية عن الحرب على المقاومة والجيش السوري في الجنوب، والاكتفاء بتسويات أمنية مع الروس شمالاً لضرورات الحرب على داعش، وإعاقة كل تسوية سياسية تشرّع التعاون مع الدولة السورية وتعيد لها حضورها الدبلوماسي وحركتها الاقتصادية لضرورات الحرب على الدولة السورية والمقاومة.

(Visited 2٬907 times, 101 visits today)
%d bloggers like this: