04-11-13

Geneva 2 Syria: Syrians' right to self-determination

Foreign Ministry: Kerry's statements are violation of the Syrians' right to self-determination

Nov 4, 2013

Damascus, (SANA) - A Foreign and Expatriates Ministry source on Sunday dismissed US Secretary of State John Kerry's continued statements as aimed to abort Geneva conference and constituting a blatant interference in the Syrian Affairs.

The source stressed that Kerry's statements constitute violation of the Syrian people's right to self-determination.

"If the US was sincere about cooperating with the Russian Federation in sponsoring Geneva conference, then Kerry must grasp that the Syrian people alone have the right to choose their leadership and political future without any foreign interference," said the source.

It went on saying that "Kerry must realize that the success of Geneva conference depends on the will of the Syrian people themselves through agreement to work to halt violence and terrorism and achieve the political settlement that would lead to the broadest participation in drawing Syria's future."

H. Said

http://213.178.225.235/eng/21/2013/11/04/510556.htm

Nobel Peace Laureate: 'Syrian people have the right for self-determination'
http://orientalreview.org/2013/10/22/nobel-peace-laureate-syrian-people-have-the-right-for-self-determination/

Obama's Nobel Prize

Oct. 9, 2009 - 'Cool Reaction in the Mideast to Obama's Nobel Prize'
http://content.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1929500,00.html

Palestinians still belief in American peace process

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1) On November 15, 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama praised Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for urging his cabinet to accept a U.S. proposal to extend a freeze on West Bank settlement building for 90 days. Under the plan, Washington would block UN resolutions critical of Israel, and supply Israel with fighter jets worth $3 billion. The US government also promised Israel that after the 90-day moratorium, they would not seek an extension, and settlement construction in the West Bank and East Jerusalem (all of which is illegal under international law) could continue unabated.

2) In February 2011, more than 100 nations voted for a U.N. resolution that would have condemned illegal Israeli settlements and halted any new construction. The United States vetoed it.

3) On February 19, 2011, Israel said it was deeply grateful to the United States after it vetoed a United Nations resolution put forward by the Palestinian leadership condemning Israeli settlement activity.

4) On  Oct 27, 2011, Israeli jetfighters engaged in aerial bombing of the Palestinian city of Khan Yunes in the Gaza Strip. 

Nearly 34 years ago, an America-firster used The American Mercury magazine to warn of the danger posed by Zionism and its rule of Washington and the Mideast. 

http://www.mediamonitors.net/johnhenshaw1.html

Peace talks: Half a million Israelis live in illegal settlements

 
The Palestinian Authority has condemned Israel for its plans to build more settlements in the occupied West Bank and East al-Quds (Jerusalem), and a wall along the Jordanian border.

November 3, 2013

Nabil Abu Rudeineh, the spokesman for acting Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas, said that Washington must send the Tel Aviv regime a clear message that its actions are jeopardizing peace efforts. 

“Settlement is illegal and the fence will be removed,” the spokesman said. “There will be no peace or stability in the region without the establishment of a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital.” 

The warning came on the eve of US Secretary of State John Kerry’s visit to the Middle East region. 

Israel’s decision to build the wall and nearly 2000 more settler units has angered Palestinians ahead of the talks with Kerry. The Palestinians have threatened to go to the UN Security Council over the issue.

According to settlement watchdog, Peace Now, which opposes and tracks settlement construction activities in the occupied Palestinian territories, the tenders for 1,859 new illegal settler units were published on Sunday. 

The non-governmental organization noted that 1,031 plots were offered by Israel's Housing and Construction Ministry in the occupied West Bank, along with 828 in the East al-Quds. 

"Within a few months they will choose the winning bids and the successful contractors will be able to start building within a number of weeks," Peace Now's Settlement Watch project director, Hagit Ofran, said.

Israeli settlements are considered illegal by the UN and most countries because the territories were captured by Israel in the Six-Day War of 1967, and are hence subject to the Geneva Conventions, which forbid construction on occupied lands. 

Palestinians are seeking to create an independent state on the territories of the West Bank, East al-Quds, and the Gaza Strip and are demanding Israel to withdraw from the occupied Palestinian territories. 

Tel Aviv, however, has refused to return to the 1967 borders and is unwilling to discuss the issue of al-Quds. 

More than half a million Israelis live in over 120 illegal settlements built since the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds in 1967. 

http://www.presstv.com/detail/2013/11/03/332835/israel-condemned-for-construction-plans/

Peace Talks: US drone strike against Pakistan

Latest US Drone Strike Could Derail Pakistan’s Peace Talks

Interior Minister Accuses US of Deliberate Sabotage

November 1, 2013

The apparent death of Tehreek-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) leader Hakimullah Mehsud and 24 others in the latest US drone strike against Pakistan’s tribal areas is being touted as a “serious loss” to the TTP by US officials, but it’s potentially an even bigger blow to Pakistan’s peace talks.

Hakimullah had expressed openness to peace talks, but had recently conditioned them on the Pakistani government being able to follow through on its promises to end the drone strikes. His death not only replaces him with a new leader who may not be so interested, but brings the drones to the fore of the group’s mind again.

The peace talks had been slow to get off the ground, again because of the drones, and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan accused the US of deliberate “sabotage” of the process by launching the strikes today.

If it does damage the peace talks as much as seems likely, expect some serious retaliation from Pakistan, and particularly from the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwah provincial government, which has threatened to cut off US supplies to Afghanistan if the strikes don’t end.

Imran Khan, the head of that provincial government, lashed today’s attack, saying it was a direct attack against the peace process, and warning that it would seriously damage US-Pakistan relations.

http://news.antiwar.com/2013/11/01/latest-us-drone-strike-could-derail-pakistans-peace-talks/

January 12th, 2012 - 'US inches closer to peace talks with Taliban'
http://security.blogs.cnn.com/2012/01/12/us-inches-closer-to-peace-talks-with-taliban/

May 24, 2013 - Obama: 'US will Continue its Targeted Killing with Drones' (Woods)
http://www.juancole.com/2013/05/continue-targeted-killing.html

Peace Talks Syria - Geneva 2: Bombing Israeli warplanes

October 31, 2013

Israeli warplanes struck a Syrian air defense base near the port city of Latakia on Thursday, US official have confirmed to media.

An Obama administration official told AP that the attack happened overnight on Thursday, but provided no details. Another security official told the news agency that it took place in the Syrian port city of Latakia, and that the targets were Russian-made SA-125 missiles.

http://news.antiwar.com/2013/11/01/israel-furious-as-white-house-confirms-latest-syria-attack/

http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/idf-intelligence-chief-israel-s-next-war-will-see-heavy-casualties-1.322484

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Israel a Major Obstacle to Peace

May 23, 2009 – Syria: Israel A “Major Obstacle” To Peace
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503543_162-5035594-503543.html

May 23, 2009 – Associated Press – Syria’s Assad: Israel Is ‘Obstacle’ to Peace
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,521417,00.html

7.13.09 Syria to EU: Israel obstacle to peace – Israel News, Ynetnews
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3745949,00.html

May.23, 2009 – Assad: Israel is the major obstacle to peace
http://www.haaretz.com/news/assad-israel-is-the-major-obs...

4 June 2008 – Normalizing occupation: Syria, Israel and “peace talks”
http://electronicintifada.net/content/normalizing-occupat...

MARCH 2005 – CAN ISRAEL AND SYRIA REACH PEACE ? OBSTACLES, LESSONS AND PROSPECTS
http://www.bakerinstitute.org/publications/wp_israelsyria...

Israel Buys the US Congress: Sabotaging the US-Iran Peace Negotiations
http://www.globalresearch.ca/israel-buys-the-us-congress-sabotaging-the-us-iran-peace-negotiations/5356541

03-11-13

Latest News Syria: Syrian people demonstrating

Nov 3, 2013

Homs, (SANA) – For the second consecutive day, the people of the Rastan city in Homs countryside demonstrated against the armed terrorist groups on Sunday.

SANA reporter said that more than 1000 persons took to streets, chanting slogans against the terrorists and calling for the Syrian Arab Army to eliminate these groups.

They stressed that the terrorists are responsible for the current situation in the city.

M. Nassr

http://213.178.225.235/eng/337/2013/11/03/510650.htm

Latest News Syria: 50 billion for reconstruction












 
 







Nov 3, 2013
 

Damascus, (SANA)- The government on Sunday briefed the People's Assembly on its statement on a draft law on the general state budget for the fiscal year 2014 estimated at SYP 1390 billion.

Appropriations for running operations were valued at SYP 1010 billion, while those for investment operations were set at SYP 380 billion, with an increase of SYP 105 billion compared to 2013 budget.

Subsidies appropriations were estimated at SYP 615 billion, recording a SYP 103 billion increase over budget of 2013.

The draft law also included SYP 50 billion for reconstruction and public property rehabilitation works and compensation for private property losses caused by the current events in the country.

Minister of Finance Ismael Ismael pointed out that the government has adopted a new approach when drafting the 2014 budget that is complementary to the measures taken in 2013 in terms of activating economic and social action and giving priority to the agricultural and industrial sector.

He added that the 2014 budget goes in line with the circumstances and developments facing the national economy in light of the current crisis with focusing on controlling public spending.

In terms of the investment appropriations, the Minister noted that priority was given to vital projects and projects with high implementation percentage.

The Assembly later referred a draft law on establishing a general commission named the Syrian Commission for Family and Population Affairs and another draft law ratifying an agreement to establish the Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia, affiliated to the United Nations.

H. Said

http://213.178.225.235/eng/24/2013/11/03/510548.htm

Latest news Syria: half of the population now live in poverty

A destroyed factory in the northwestern Syrian city of Aleppo (file photo)

Syrian Minister of Industry Kamaleddine Tohme says the ongoing conflict in his country has taken a heavy toll on Syria’s industrial sector, and cost it over two billion dollars.

Nov. 3, 2013

"The losses in the industrial sector from the start of the Syrian crisis till October total 336 billion Syrian pounds ($2.2 billion)," Tohme said in a statement published in the Damascus-based al-Watan newspaper on Sunday. 

He further noted that the private industrial sector has lost $1.5 billion, adding that the public industry has suffered $700 million. 

Tohme underlined that the figures did not reflect the losses that foreign-sponsored Syrian militants have incurred in areas under their control. 

A report commissioned by UN agencies in October stated that the devastating conflict in Syria has left over half of the country's population in poverty. 

"More than half of the population now live in poverty, with 7.9 million people becoming poor since the beginning of the crisis, of whom 4.4 million now live in extreme poverty," said the report.

It also put the unemployment rate at 48.6 percent, saying 49 percent of Syria’s children were out of school as education "is in the midst of a silent disaster." 

The report further noted that Syria’s gross domestic product (GDP) has contracted by 34.3 percent in the first quarter of 2013, and 39.6 percent in the second, compared to that of last year, and is in a state of “spectacular collapse.” 

Syria also suffered a total economic loss of $103.1 billion (75 billion euros) by the first quarter of 2013. The amount is equivalent to 147 percent of Syria's 2010 GDP at constant prices. 

Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside the country. 

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/11/03/332783/conflict-costs-syria-industry-22bn/

Latest News Syria: Syrian troops take full control of al-Sfeira town

 
Units of Syrian Army troops have taken full control of al-Sfeira town in Syria’s northwestern province of Aleppo and killed dozens of foreign-sponsored militants.


Sun Nov 3, 2013

Syrian troops liberated the town on Sunday after fierce exchange of fire with the gunmen fighting to topple President Bashar al-Assad’s government, the official SANA news agency reported. 

Syrian soldiers seized various kinds of weapons and munitions following the gun battle and defused more than 700 improvised explosive devices planted by militants in the town’s streets. 

Government forces also destroyed several cars used by terrorists, among them 35 pickup trucks equipped with heavy machine guns, as well as three 107-millimeter rocket launchers. 

Moreover, Syrian army units discovered six makeshift workshops used by foreign-backed militants to manufacture a range of weapons, three warehouses full of ammunition and gas cylinders, long tunnels dug by anti-government armed men and classified documents. 

On Saturday, Syrian troops regained full control of two areas in Sadad town, situated 101 kilometers (63 miles) northeast of the capital, Damascus, following heavy clashes with militants. 

Syrian forces also inflicted heavy losses on the militants in the countryside of Idlib, with the army saying that it has destroyed many of the militants’ hideouts as well as their weapons and ammunition. 

Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. Reports indicate that the Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside the country. 

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/11/03/332804/syrian-troops-seize-northwestern-town/

Syrian army keeps repelling 'militants' near capital
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/11/03/332680/syrian-army-keeps-repelling-militants/

Geneva 2 Syria: China

China supports Geneva II conference on Syria

October 31, 2013

Damascus: China has supported efforts to find a political solution of persisting Syrian crisis and supported the Geneva II conference in this regard. 

The Chinese ambassador to Syria Zhang Xun said Wednesday that China deems the political solution and the Geneva II conference on Syria as "necessary" in light of the current situation in the war-torn country, Xinhua reported. 

"We all deem the political solution and convening the Geneva II conference as necessary, particularly in light of the current situation. 

"The military solution has no way out, and any party of the conflict can't defeat the others," Zhang said after meeting the visiting UN-Arab League joint special envoy Lakhdar Brahimi. 

"Brahimi has provided us with the results of his Middle East tour," the ambassador remarked about his meeting with Brahimi, stressing that China "actively support convening the Geneva II conference in order to reach for a political solution to the Syrian issue." 

He also reiterated his country's rejection of any form of foreign military intervention in Syria, saying that "we reject the foreign military intervention and wish for a ceasefire and a halt of violence in Syria. 

"We support the work of Brahimi, and exert efforts in dealing with concerned Syrian parties."

The long-awaited Geneva II conference on Syria aims to bring the government and the opposition to one table by the end of November to hammer out a political solution to end the suffering of all Syrians.

IANS

http://zeenews.india.com/news/world/china-supports-geneva-ii-conference-on-syria_887157.html

Latest News Syria: Geneva 2

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As a reminder:

Free Syrian Army wants guns and heavy weapons

Brussels, 5.4.2013

General Selim Idris, Chief of Staff of the Free Syrian Army was in the European Parliament, where he was invited by warmonger Guy Verhofstadt, leader of the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats ‘for Europe’.

Idris said that his army needed the West to supply “weapons and ammunition” so that his forces can “defend themselves.”

He said that, if such support arrived, “The regime will collapse in a month.” He added that Syrians supporting the rebellion didn’t understand why the West had an arms embargo.

“The people say they don’t understand why international community sees the news on TV and just speak, saying ‘Assad has to go’. There is no real action,” he said.

He was supported by ALDE President, Guy Verhofstadt, who said that there was “a growing consensus in Europe that the Syrian conflict cannot go on interminably.” The Liberal leader also said that arms should be supplied “in order that you can defend yourselves.”

According to the liberals, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Catherine Ashton has to make proposals to the 27 EU Member states. In their view, Lady Ashton’s response is currently “mostly passive”.

Both France and Britain have indicated that they are prepared to reconsider the embargo on arming the western backed ‘rebels’…

Photo: Chief of Staff of the ‘Free Syrian Army’ Gen. Salim Idris addresses the media after he discussed the situation in Syria with Guy Verhofstadt, right, at the European Parliament in Brussels, Wednesday March 6, 2013.

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Liberal politics: 'Non-military security'

Liberals recognise the contribution to peace made by aid-driven democratisation and development. We believe that we should be more flexible and open minded in our approach to security. The result of this would be to transfer more political commitment and money from military security to non-military security.

http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2013_11_03/Syria-says-Kerry-statements-threaten-peace-talks-5696/

http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2013_10_29/Damascus-to-send-delegates-to-Geneva-2-despite-opposition-boycott-Syrian-Ambassador-3579/

http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2013_10_31/Russia-proposes-to-hold-a-meeting-in-Moscow-with-Syrian-members-of-govt-and-opposition-MFA-2646/