News (20 Sept. 2007) - Syria Comment

News (20 Sept. 2007)

Haaretz, here. (Thanks friday-lunch-club)
“… In his meetings, Welch told his counterparts that efforts must be made to bolster the government of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, suggesting that any Israeli operations may bolster Siniora’s rivals, the pro-Syrian factions in Lebanon…”

40 March 14 MPs have returned to Beirut and are currently residing at the Phoenicia Hotel under extremely tight security measures.

Revue de presse : Politique extérieure, 20 septembre 2007
Selon Damas : « On a besoin d’une personnalité qui tient le dossier des relations bilatérales, 19 septembre 2007 (V.P. Sharaa stated that Syria is in favor of a Lebanese understanding that would lead to the election of a new president. He said that Syria does not interfere in Lebanese affairs, especially in the choice of a president, but let it be understood that proper relations between the two countries requires a personality who can deal with with all aspects of the relationship. He warned against the US striking Iran.)

A Damas, lors de l’audience accordée à une délégation des partis libanais, M. Farouk CHARAA, Vice-président syrien, a affirmé l’attachement de la Syrie à une entente libanaise qui conduirait à la facilitation de l’élection d’un nouveau Président de la République. Il a affirmé que Damas ne s’ingérait pas dans les affaires libanaises, notamment dans l’échéance présidentielle, mais il a laissé entendre que l’organisation des relations entre les deux pays exige une personnalité qui tient les dossiers des relations sous tous leurs aspects.

M. CHARAA a estimé que les deux prochains mois seront difficiles pour la région, car il n’y a pas d’indices sur des compromis ou des solutions sur les dossiers brûlants. Il a également indiqué que tout coup qui sera porté à l’Iran renversera toutes les équations dans la région. Si l’Administration américaine et Israël, en accord avec l’Europe, frappent l’Iran, toute la région sera embrasée. (As-Safir)

La Syrie attend une réponse des Etats-Unis et de l’Arabie Saoudite à l’initiative du Président du Parlement libanais, 18 septembre 2007 (Syria is waiting for a US and Saudi response to Berri’s initiative.)

Sur le plan des positions politiques, des sources diplomatiques ont révélé hier à Al-Hayat une position marquante selon laquelle un certain nombre de hauts responsables syriens que l’Ambassadeur de France à Damas M. Michel DUCLOS avait rencontré, ont signalé à ce dernier que l’initiative de BERRY au sujet de l’échéance présidentielle au Liban s’inscrivait dans le cadre des efforts déployés par la Syrie pour répondre favorablement à la demande française de jouer un rôle positif dans cette échéance.

Revue de presse: Relations France Syrie (Kourchner said he does not exclude a visit to Syria if Damascus abstains from all meddling in Lebanon.)

Le Ministre français des Affaires étrangères, M. Bernard KOUCHNER, a indiqué hier qu’il n’excluait pas de visiter la Syrie et de faire preuve d’une ouverture plus grande envers ce pays, si Damas s’abstenait de toute ingérence au Liban. suite

Le Ministre français des Affaires étrangères, M. Bernard KOUCHNER, a indiqué hier qu’il n’excluait pas de visiter la Syrie et de faire preuve d’une ouverture plus grande envers ce pays, si Damas s’abstenait de toute ingérence au Liban. suite

Le Ministre français des Affaires étrangères, M. Bernard KOUCHNER, a indiqué hier qu’il n’excluait pas de visiter la Syrie et de faire preuve d’une ouverture plus grande envers ce pays, si Damas s’abstenait de toute ingérence au Liban. suite

Al-Safadi: we won’t take part in electing a president with half+1 quorum (Translation thanks to Mideastwire.com)

Tha’ir Abbas of Asharq Al Awsat, an independent Saudi owned newspaper, wrote on September 19: “The Lebanese public works minister Muhammad Al-Safadi, the head of the parliamentary Tripoli Coalition which is part of the March14 bloc, settled the issue of his coalition over the issue of the quorum necessary to elect the next president with his announcement to Asharq Al Awsat in Beirut yesterday that he will not accept to participate in electing a president with the half+1 quorum and that he will not recognize the legitimacy of any president elected solely by the March 14 team of which his coalition, which includes four MPs, is part. Al-Safadi warned strongly against electing the president with a half+1 quorum and considered that doing so “will expose the country to a risk of civil war”.

CNN reports that another U.S. official said he has seen satellite imagery of that attack that shows a hole in the center of a building’s roof with the walls still largely intact.

That would strongly indicate a laser guided bomb was used with a fused warhead that exploded after the bomb entered the building roof. The photo is highly classified and not expected to be publicly released.

A Pentagon official could not confirm several recent news reports that nuclear material from North Korea has arrived in Syria and was the potential target of a recent Israeli airstrike there.

In fact, he said none of the information he had reviewed as part of his job indicated any nuclear material was involved

SYRIA URGED TO HONOR FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION

More than two-dozen human rights groups from around the world called on Syria Sept. 10 to honor the country’s constitutional guarantee of free expression and to release prisoners of conscience.

The groups, in an effort spearheaded by the Cairo-based Egyptian Organization for Human Rights, called on Syria to “work on strengthening freedom of expression and to put an end to all repressive practices against journalists and activists, including harassment, torture and arbitrary detention” in a letter to President Bashar al-Assad.

In the letter, signatories specifically called for the release of prominent human rights lawyer Anwar al-Bunni, journalist Michael Kilo and political activist Kamal al-Labwani. Groups from Russia, Bahrain, Tunisia and Lebanon signed the letter alongside international organizations like the International Federation of Journalists and Freedom House.

On a lighter note, one reader posted this note in order to suggest that Lebanon could get worse:
(NY Times Sept. 21) Calls for a Breakup Grow Ever Louder in Belgium….more than three months after a general election, Belgium has failed to create a government, producing a crisis so profound that it has led to a flood of warnings, predictions, even promises that the country is about to disappear.

“We are two different nations, an artificial state created as a buffer between big powers, and we have nothing in common except a king, chocolate and beer,” said Filip Dewinter, the leader of Vlaams Belang, or Flemish Bloc…. 

Comments (0)


There are no comments for this post so far.

Post a comment