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Rouhani backs Russia's initiative on Syria

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani praised the statement made by Syria on joining the Chemical Weapons Convention and backed Russia's initiatives in this sphere, according to Voice of Russia, Interfax.

"Being the largest victim of the use of chemical weapons, Iran is against the production, storage, and use of such weapons and supports the disposal of all types of weapons of mass destruction," Rouhani said at the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Bishkek.

For this reason, "we consider Russia's initiative and the statement made by Syria on joining the Chemical Weapons Convention a good start for achieving this goal," he said.

Rouhani opposed to threats of military action in Syria

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has called for a political settlement to the crisis in Syria and said that any attempt to resolve this conflict by force must be neutralized.

"Every possible effort should be taken to attain a political solution of this problem. Any threats to use force must be condemned and held in check," Rouhani said at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Bishkek summit.


Russia hails Syrian statement on chemical weapons as important step towards settling crisis - Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin has welcomed the Syrian decision to become a full member of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction as an important step towards settling the crisis in Syria,according to Voice of Russia, ITAR-TASS.

"The Syrian representative to the UN has just said that Syria will become a full member of the Convention today. I think we should welcome this decision of the Syrian administration," Putin said at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in Bishkek.

"I'd like to think that this will be a very significant step towards settling the crisis in Syria," the Russian president said.

"This is a confirmation of the sincere intention of the Syrian government to follow this path," Putin noted.

It's important to promote idea of establishing int'l control over Syrian chemical weapons - Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin again said a military intervention in Syria is unacceptable and pointed out the need to promote the initiative to establish international control over chemical weapons in Syria.

"Syria is the focus of our attention now. We consider external military intervention in this country without a sanction from the UN Security Council unacceptable," Putin said at a meeting of the Council of the Heads of State of the SCO member-countries in Bishkek.

"The recent diplomatic efforts have helped reduce the immediate threat of a military operation," Putin said. "A large role in this context was played by the promotion of the initiative to establish an international team to monitor chemical weapons in Syria," he said.


Saudi Arabia Sends Inmates to Fight in Syria

TEHRAN - A top secret memo revealed that the Saudi Kingdom sent death-row inmates, sentenced to execution by decapitation, to Syria to fight against the Syrian government in exchange for commuting their sentences, according to FNA.

According to the memo, written by the Ministry of Interior in Saudi Arabia dated on April 17, 2012, the Saudi Kingdom negotiated with a total of 1239 inmates, offering them a full pardon and a monthly salary for their families in exchange for their training in order to send them to fight in Syria.

The memo was signed by Abdullah bin Ali al-Rmezan, the "Director of follow up in Ministry of Interior", the Assyrian International News Agency reported.

According to the memo, there have been the nationals of Yemenis, Palestinians, Saudis, Sudanese, Syrians, Jordanians, Somalis, Afghanis, Egyptians, Pakistanis, Iraqis, and Kuwaitis among the inmates.

There have been 23 Iraqi prisoners.

A former member of the Iraqi parliament, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the authenticity of the document and said most of the Iraqi prisoners in Saudi Arabia sent to Syria returned to Iraq and admitted that they had agreed to the deal offered by the Saudi Kingdom, and requested the Iraqi government to petition the Saudi government to release their families, who were being held hostage in Saudi Arabia.

Yemeni nationals who were sent to Syria also returned to Yemen and asked their government to secure the release of their families, according to the former Iraqi MP, who said there are many more documents in this regard.

Initially Saudi Arabia denied the existence of the program. But the testimony of the released prisoners forced the Saudi government to admit, in private circles, its existence.

Here is the translation of the memo:

This is a document issued by

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Ministry of Interior

Follow-up  LOGO Number: 71466/J/H


Date: 25/5/1433 H. (April /17/2012 AD(

)Top Secret)

His Excellency General Suood Al-Thnayyan

The Classified (Secret) Office at the Ministry of Interior  May Allah protect him

Peace be upon you and Allah's mercy and blessings

In reference to the Royal Court telegram No. 112, dated on 04/19/1433 H (March 3, 2012), referring to those held in the Kingdom jails accused with crimes to which Islamic Sharia law of execution by sword (decapitation) applies, we inform you that we are in dialogue with the accused criminals who have been convicted with smuggling drugs, murder, rape, from the following nationalities: 110 Yemenis, 21 Palestinians, 212 Saudis, 96 Sudanese, 254 Syrians, 82 Jordanians, 68 Somalis, 32 Afghanis, 94 Egyptians, 203 Pakistanis, 23 Iraqis, and 44 Kuwaitis.

We have reached an agreement with them that they will be exempted from the death sentence and given a monthly salary to their families and loved ones, who will be prevented from traveling outside Saudi Arabia in return for rehabilitation of the accused and their training in order to send them to Jihad in Syria.

Please accept my greetings.


Director of follow up in Ministry of Interior

Abdullah bin Ali al-Rmezan


Authority of enforcement of the common good and prevention of forbidden

Copy for general intelligence


“CIA Fabricated Evidence to Lure US into War with Syria”: Ray McGovern

The intelligence gathered against Syria’s government was manufactured by elements within the spy community in order to mislead the US President to take punitive action, Ray McGovern, a veteran CIA analyst, told RT.

McGovern was among the signatories to the letter from veteran intelligence professionals to Obama, warning the US president that Syrian government is not responsible for the chemical attack, and that “CIA Director John Brennan is perpetrating a pre-Iraq-War-type fraud on members of Congress, the media, [and] the public.”

RT: You were one of the signatories to that letter to the US President. Do you think it will influence Obama?

Ray McGovern: Well, the problem of course is getting into what they call the mainstream media. The media is drumbeating for the war just as before Iraq. And they don’t want to hear that the evidence is very very flimsy. They don’t want to hear that people within the CIA – senior people, with great access to this information – assure us, the veterans, that there’s no conclusive evidence that Syrian government ordered those chemical incidents on August 21. They don’t want to hear that. They want to process beyond that and just deal with what we must do. Now, you don’t assume those things – you need proof of them.

RT: In the letter, you cite evidence that the Syrian opposition and its allies carried out a chemical weapons provocation. Why do you think this has been ignored completely by Obama and Kerry?

RM: The reason that they don’t adduce the evidence is because it wouldn’t stand up not only in the court of law, it wouldn’t bear close scrutiny. We’ve been down this road before. It happened before in Iraq. What the president needs to do is to release the intercepted message, on which most of this depends. And once he’s done that, we could see what he’s got. There’s precedent for this – Ronald Reagan in 1986, when the Libyans bombed a discotheque in Berlin, killing two US servicemen and wounding hundreds. He hit [Muammar] Gaddafi’s palace, killing his little daughter, 15 months old, and almost killing his son three years old. Now, the world said: ‘You can’t do that! What’s your evidence that the Libyans did that?’ And Reagan came to us and said: ‘We have to release that intercepted message. And we said; ‘No! No! No! You can’t do that because you’ll blow our source.’ And he said: ‘Do it anyway.’ That was released and the world calmed down. I don’t defend killing little children, but at least Reagan gained some credibility from the fact that he saw that the interests of the state, of the US, superseded protecting sources and methods. That’s what Obama has to do now. We’re very suspicious that if he’s unwilling to do that, since he sends his Chief of Staff before the camera and says: ‘Well, it wouldn’t stand up in a court of law, but, hey, intelligence is intelligence – you got to trust this. But we’re not going to trust him this time, especially when the head of the intelligence establishment is a self-admitted perjurer’.

RT: Why has it been so hard for Washington to sell to the world its case for intervention? Very few of their key allies explicitly support a military strike right now.

RM: I have to say that if you look at the ‘Cui Bono’ – the classic question: ‘who does this profit?’The only state, the only country that it profits is Israel. As long as, there’s an unending… looks like it’s going to be a 30-year war in Syria, not only in Syria, but in the whole Middle East area, now that Israel feels that the Arab forces aren’t going to be turning their swords and their guns on Israel. It’s that simple. Now, [US Secretary of State] John Kerry has amply demonstrated that he’s under the influence of [Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin] Netanyahu. He made believe he was talking about Palestine in the last couple of months, but what he was really talking about was Syria and that shows in his behavior and even his demeanor. So, what we have here is a situation where Israel and the tough guys – and tough gals now – in the White House, advising Obama, say, ‘you’ve got to do something’, and the only country that would profit from this is the state of Israel.

RT: We heard John Kerry backtrack a little yesterday, by saying that Obama hasn’t made a decision yet on Syria. The US President was much more certain about an attack on Syria a week ago. Why the softening of their stance?

RM: You know what happened a week ago. Last Friday, Kerry went before the cameras and said: ‘We got to do this. And here’s not the intelligence assessment, mind you – but the government’s assessment.’ Meaning the White House had a chance to massage it, edit it. It didn’t hold up to scrutiny. Now, what happened? Apparently the military got to the president, and I see some evidence of this. Next thing we know the president changes his mind on Saturday afternoon, and the only thing that really intervened was that the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey, telling the president: “Look. It’s going to be really hard to explain why we have to do it now. We could do it tomorrow, or next week, or next month. We don’t really have to do it now.” And the president said that in justifying this delay. What’s more evidence? Lindsey Graham and John McCain the next day just took off after the Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman in a very personal and vindictive way. Because they know the military leaders went to the president saying, “Look, we know you’re being told this is going to be easy and limited and all that – but these guys and gals don’t know a thing about war. We do. And we know that it’s not going to be so easy, so if you’re going to do this, you’d better gain wide support, because, otherwise, your presidency is over.”

RT: And who do you think the Congressional vote is going to play out?

RM: You know… I’m not a domestic political analyst. So, my opinion isn’t much better than anyone else’s. In Washington, within the beltway and in all the TV shows, it’s always “we’ve got to do something! We must protect the President!” The odd thing is that this time the Democrats have drunk the Kool Aid [an American expression in business and politics, meaning to follow blindly]. This time we have to protect the President, he’s gone out on a limb here. He’s drunk the Kool Aid, and I talked to a Congressman last night for five minutes… and it was every clear that he pledged the House leader that he would vote according to what the President says, because “we have to protect the President”. Are you going to say the President is lying? We don’t have to say [that]. What you do need to say, according to our information, is that the President is being given cooked-up intelligence because John Brennan, the head of the CIA, and James Clapper, the confessed perjurer, have thought it in their best interests to cater to the wishes of the White House, which have been very clear: ‘this time, we want to strike Syria.’ It’s a terrible situation, it’s a political sort of thing now, and we’ll have to see how it plays out. I have more hope than this time last week that it will be turned down. And then I don’t think the President would violate the constitution and the UN Charter both by starting a war.

Source: RT


Putin: Armed Groups in Syria Used Chemical Weapon to Provoke American Intervention

NEW YORK – Russian President Vladimir Putin has stressed the armed terrorist groups in Syria are the party which used chemical weapons not the Syrian Arab army.

In an article, published in the Wednesday issue of "The New York Times", Putin said: "There is every reason to believe that poison gas was used not by the Syrian Army, but by armed groups, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists."

Putin warned that any US military intervention in Syria would unleash a new wave of terrorism and could destabilize the region and damage "an entire system of international law."

"A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism," Putin said, arguing that it could also undermine talks on Iran's nuclear program, and efforts to settle the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

The Russian President also warned of the repercussions of launching military operations in circumvention of the UN Security Council, pointing out that the United Nations may collapse  if influential countries bypass the United Nations and take military action without Security Council authorization.

Putin alarmed that along with mercenaries from Arab countries, people from Western countries and Russia are also fighting in Syria.

"Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia are an issue of our deep concern," Putin said.

"Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali," Putin added.

"This threatens us all," Putin said. He pointed out that the US State Department has designated the so-called al-Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the armed opposition, as terrorist organizations.

"This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world," Putin said.

H. Mustafa