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Jamil: Syrian Army Able to Repel Any Aggressive Move

TEHRAN - "The Syrian army is capable of repelling any type of threat and aggression against the country," Deputy Prime Minister Qadri Jamil, who is a renowned member of the opposition, said after the army traced and destroyed an Israeli vehicle in the Syrian territories,according to FNA.

"All international conventions entitled Syria to the legitimate right to destroy the Israeli military vehicle which had trespassed the Syrian territory since it meant defending our national sovereignty," Jamil told FNA on Sunday.

Stressing that the international situation will not allow a new confrontation in the region, he said, "The Syrian army can repel any aggression against the Syrian territory due to its capabilities."

Earlier this week, the Syrian army said that it found an Israeli military vehicle during its wide-scale attack in the central city of al-Qusseir.

According to the report, the vehicle was found along with tapping and jamming devices in al-Qusseir where the Syrian army has taken full control over the entire Eastern part of the strategic city near the borders with Lebanon.

The Syrian Arab News Agency and the state-TV ran footage of the vehicle, reiterating the government's accusation that the latest Israeli raid against Damascus aimed at weakening the abilities of the Syrian army and giving a hand to rebels in al-Qusseir and elsewhere in the country.

They said that the discovery proves that the "Free Army"and the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front are "just titles for an entity that is being led by Israel, Turkey and Qatar".


President Al-Assad Reassures About Bouteflika's Health

DAMASCUS, (ST)- President Bashar Al-Assad on Sunday sent a cable to Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika to reassure about  his health.

President Al-Assad wished President Bouteflika speedy recovery calling the Almighty God to bless him so as  to return to the homeland with good health and continue the process of giving, construction and the wise leadership of the brotherly country of Algeria.


Ahmadinejad Asks for Stop of Gunfights to Restore Peace in Syria

TEHRAN - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Sunday called for the cessation of hostilities and start of national understanding,according to FNA.

Ahmadinejad made the remarks while speaking to Iran's Ambassador to Syria Mohammad Reza Sheibani via video conferencing and during a ceremony to inaugurate major ITC projects, including the Europe-Persia Express Gateway (EPEG) fiber optic project, which links Germany and several other European states to Iran.

In his remarks, President Ahmadinejad expressed the hope that security, tranquility, unity and solidarity would be restored in Syria.

He also hoped for the stop of gunfights and end of violence so that national understanding and the ground would be paved for the reconstruction of the country.

Iran has always underlined the need for a diplomatic solution to the Syrian problem, and has recently intensified its diplomatic efforts to end the ongoing crisis in Syria.

Tehran will be hosting the meeting of the Friends of Syria in late May in a bid to find a peaceful solution to the ongoing crisis in the Muslim country.

Representatives of a number of foreign countries and international organizations will take part in the upcoming friends of Syria meeting in the Iranian capital.


Correa Voices Solidarity with Syria

QUITO, (ST)- "Ecuador  totally voices solidarity with Syria, as leadership and people, in the face of war  waged against it  by the global imperialism, "underscored Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa,according to  Xinhua.

"Actually, it is an open book and everything is clear  … what Syria is facing  a conspiracy, not demands for democracy, "added  President Correa .

Correa's comments came during an inauguration held in the country's National Assembly.

 The swearing-in took place before Gabriela Rivadeneira,the newly-elected 29-year-old President of the National Assembly."Now, the Citizen Revolution is on track. It is the revolution of the poor ,"said Rivadeneira.

Some 10 heads of state and 90 delegations from different countries and international organizations attended the inauguration ceremony .Among them were Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ,Chilean President Sebastian Pinera and Syria's ambassador to Venezuela Ghassan Abbas.

Abbas, who represented Syria at the ceremony ,conveyed President Bashar al-Assad and the Syrian government's congratulations to President Correa who in turn conveyed his heartfelt wishes to President al-Assad.

" Ecuador supports and  in solidarity with Syria at all international arenas against the new colonial attack, "commented Ecuador Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino after meeting Abbas.

Correa started his new term as president with an approval rating of 63 percent, becoming the first Ecuadorian president who has been reelected twice in 30 years.


Al-Moallem: Syria Agrees in Principle to Take Part in Geneva International Conference

BAGHDAD, (ST) – Foreign and Expatriates Minister Walid al-Moallem announced on Sunday that he informed the Iraqi Premier Nouri al-Maliki and Foreign Minister Hoshyar  Zebari about Syria's decision in principle to participate with an official delegation in the international conference scheduled to be held in Geneva in June.

Al-Moallem , who is on a visit to Baghdad, was speaking today during a joint press conference with his Iraqi counterpart Zebari, following his talks with Iraqi senior officials.

Al-Moallem said he discussed with al-Maliki and Zebari ways of enhancing the Syrian-Iraqi ties and coordination as regards international developments.    

"Since the beginning of the crisis in Syria, we have believed in dialogue among the Syrian parties as the solution to this crisis," al-Moallem said, stressing that  no power in the world can decide Syria's future on behalf of the Syrian people who alone have the right to do that," al-Moallem said.

He pointed out that the forthcoming international conference on Syria is an opportunity to attain a settlement to the crisis in the country.

For his part, Iraq's Zebari said the crisis in Syria is no longer purely Syrian, as all Syria's neighboring states have begun to be affected by the crisis repercussions on the entire region's security and safety.

He added that it is necessary to adopt political solutions, that are agreed upon by all the Syrian sides without any kind of dictates imposed on the Syrian people to choose the kind of  political leadership which represents them.

H. Mustafa