Syrian Government's ever Commitment to Dialogue Underlined

DAMASCUS, (ST)_ The Syrian Army and People are fighting in defence of the State and the building of the homeland, but not for authority, underlined Minister of Information, Omran al-Zoubi.

Minister al-Zoubi, in an interview with the Syrian Satellite Channel this evening, reiterated the Syrian Government's ever commitment to dialogue among Syrians as to solve the crisis in Syria.

'' We welcome to dialogue  every Syrian side which rejects violence, arming, and foreign interference, including the interference of any Arab country,'' said Minister al-Zoubi.

President Bashar Al-Assad's January 6th political initiative is inclusive and has covered all details for the solution, Minister al-Zoubi outlined, declaring that the government has held more than 50 meetings as to deliberate the said initiative with all spectra of the Syrian society.

The aspired to dialogue should be a Syrian-Syrian one as a political project based on a pure national basis, underscored the minister.

In reply to a question about the recent crime perpetrated at Khan al-Assad by armed terrorists, Minister al-Zoubi asserted that the terrorists believe that they can frighten the Syrians through such a heinous and brutal crime against innocent civilians and members of the Army, asserting that all the terrorists' crimes would never change the rules of the equation on the ground.

The terrorists and their supporters are definitely to pay a heavy price for their crimes sooner or later, asserted the minister, blasting the Saudi, US, French, British and Turkish support to terrorists in Syria.

A media source stated earlier that the death toll from  Khan al-Assal, which was under a chemical attack  last March  when terrorists launched a rocket containing chemical materials, killing 25 citizens and injuring 110 others, reached 123 martyrs, with many others still missing.

Minister al-Zoubi asserted that the countries which back terrorists in Syria shoulder legal responsibility for their daily violations of the UNSC resolutions on combating terrorism.

The minister pointed out that the Wahabi unilateral thinking is the same as the Zionist one.

Minister al-Zoubi affirmed that no power whatsoever can change the rules of the game on the ground, other than the Syrian Army and People, calling on the opposition abroad to distance itself from the perpetrated crimes by terrorists, work for political solution, and join the Syrian Government in combating terrorism.

''The Syrians should cooperate with the State in combating terrorism,'' added minister al-Zoubi, pointing out that the Syria Army is keen on sparing the lives of civilians, among whom the terrorists hide and even dig tunnels under the houses of the civilians.

The minister lashed out at the Saudi for -decades destructive role against Arab nationalism, and particularly against Syria during the ongoing crisis.

In reply to another question, Minister al-Zoubi spoke of the failure of Moslem Brotherhood, which lacks any project for building a state, but for ascending power.

''The US isn't serious in seeking a political solution in Syria. The US policy is unbalanced,'' said the minister in reply to another question.

Foreign terrorists fighting in Syria will be deported to their countries of origin, once they serve their prison terms for their respective crimes, the minister added.

Those who bet on the collapse of the Syrian economy bet but on a losing horse, underscored Minister al-Zoubi.


Dr. Mohammad Abdo Al-Ibrahim

Political hypocrisy!

The US policy towards the Middle East has been branded by bias and selectivity motivated by the US political and economic interests and the interests of its main ally in the region, Israel. For this reason, the US stands in the region are regarded as double standards that reach to the extent of political hypocrisy.

From the very beginning of the crisis in Syria, President Obama and senior officials at the US administration and the White House claimed that the US believes in the political solution of the crisis through dialogue away from violence. But on the ground, this stand was categorically contradicted when the US administration ordered its regional allies, especially Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia to offer funds and arms to the armed terrorist groups in Syria to kill Syrians and devastate their public and private properties. Moreover, the political deception was crystal clear when former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton publicly called on the armed groups to press ahead with their violent acts and savage crimes and refrain from taking part in any peaceful settlement or national dialogue aimed to end the crisis peacefully. The US stance towards the crisis in Syria is doubled and cannot focus on one approach. The US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov agreed on shifting the crisis into the political track while the US continues arming the opposition. Big amounts of weapons have been inflowing to the opposition in Syria and there are tens of thousands of foreign fighters fighting the Syrian army and committing horrible and savage crimes against the Syrian people.

Most recently, U.S. congressional aides said that $27 million has been spent on training the Syrian opposition fighters so far in Turkey and over 800 people have been trained as a step that reflects the U.S. involvement in providing direct support to the armed terrorist groups that shed the Syrian blood and destroy the country.

The US calls the terrorists in Syria "opposition fighters" backed by it along with other Arab and foreign states despite that the Qaeda-linked Jabhat al-Nusra, which is listed by the U.S. administration in the list of terrorism, represents the main pillar of these terrorist groups.

Another aspect of the US political hypocrisy was manifested following the recent agreement between the Russian Foreign Minister Sergi Lavrov and the US Secretary of State John Kerry to hold Geneva 2 conference through which the political solution for the crisis in Syria is advocated. But this agreement was immediately breached by new US plans to provide the so-called Syrian opposition with highly-sophisticated weapons. Washington's decision to arm the Syrian opposition violates the Russia-US initiative for organizing the international Syria conference in Geneva without preconditions.

The Syrian government has agreed to the initiative, unlike the opposition which is currently busy in seeking for more weapons and tools of destruction, vandalism and killing.

The US  attempts to send weapons to the terrorists in Syria won't form a good start to hold an international conference on Syria.

By sending more arms and tools of devastation to the armed terrorist groups, the US and its Western allies seek to turn Syria into a base for takfiri movements, which indicates their irresponsible assessment of the situation in the region.


Desperate Western media fanfare to lift terrorists’ morale

The infiltration of gunmen into the Syrian territories has been on since the onset of the crisis in the country, but the recent reports on sending large numbers of terrorists and developed weapons there are aimed at igniting media uproar to lift terrorists’ morale after their humiliating defeats at the hands of the Syrian Arab Army in various governorates.

It has been proved that sending weapons, funds and terrorists to Syria via Turkey and other border crossings started from the very beginning of the crisis in Syria. The British newspaper The Times revealed videos and photos confirming the arrival of one of the shipments to the Syrian border affirming that it is not the first time that Libyan ships try to deliver weapons to the armed groups in Syria.

New media releases also referred to the existence of mercenaries and militants from various countries, including the countries of Europe and the United States in addition to citizens from tens of countries in Syria within illegal armed terrorist groups.

Chairman of the so-called Doha Coalition, Ahmad al-Jarba said that Saudi authorities ensured sophisticated arms to what he called the opposition fighters in Syria claiming that these weapons would change facts on the ground. This statement was a desperate attempt to raise the morale of the armed groups fighting in Syria after the heavy losses inflicted upon them because of the qualitative operations carried out against them by the Syrian Arab Army.

Sending these weapons could exacerbate the violence in Syria and fuel tensions between different extremist groups in the region. This was crystal clear in recent statements made by some Takfiri leaders who affirmed the sectarian nature of the conflict in Syria. However, the US and its European and regional allies, which have been encouraging sectarian war in Syria through offering unlimited support to the armed terrorist groups, started to realize that exploiting religious tensions may incite violence and could lead to large-scale atrocities not only in Syria but in the world at large.

Several Western intelligence reports stressed that most of the weapons which the Gulf and Western countries are providing to the so-called opposition fighters fall in the hands of al-Qaeda-linked Jabhat al-Nusra and other Takfiri groups, potentially presenting a long-term threat to European and world security.

Such concerns pushed British Prime Minister David Cameron to review plans to provide the armed groups in Syria with sophisticated weapons after being warned by military chiefs that it could involve British forces in an all-out war.

According to the London-based newspaper, The Daily Telegraph, senior military officers warned the Prime Minister that with the victories realised by the Syrian army, sending arms and missiles is unlikely to make a difference, referring that these weapons might fall in the hands of extremist groups.

 Syria's steadfastness in the face of the war of terrorism waged against it will rid the region of extremists, and this steadfastness marked the beginning of the extremist terrorists' recession in the region.


Mr. Cameron's step is welcome

The UK authorities are increasingly alarmed that potential jihadists are returning to this country from Syria having learned terrorist techniques and picked up experience of combat.

According to the Independent, more than 100 British men are among thousands of foreigners who are believed to have travelled to Syria to fight alongside al-Qaeda affiliates, amid growing worries by the intelligence agencies that those foreigners would fall under the influence of the al-Qaeda affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra and other terrorist groups fighting the Syrians.

“We now also have to think about Syria as one of the big ungoverned spaces of concern to counter-terrorism in the UK,” a source told the Independent, whose reviewer of terrorism legislation, David Anderson, said: “Jihadi conflicts have the potential to radicalise individuals in the UK and for some individuals who return from fighting abroad to pose a direct threat to the UK.”

The threat from terrorists was illustrated by the killing of Drummer Lee Rigby in May in Woolwich, south-east London, the British Daily pointed out.

This is but a small portion of the Syrian government's continued warnings against terrorism spillover. Unfortunately, the Europeans, with whom the Syrian government and people have more to share on combating terrorism, have paid no heed and resorted to reckless uncalculated anti-Syria policies through supporting, trainings and arming al-Qaeda affiliates in Syria!

Regardless of how much late is the stance of Mr. David Cameron's as to refrain from supplying the terrorists in Syria with arms; it is indeed better than never. The need is dire more than ever for an international coordinated effort to uproot and combat terrorism not only in Syria but worldwide.

Mr. Cameron's step is welcome and can be taken seriously-if true- as a confidence-building measure with the majority of the Syrians on the way to Geneva 2, knowingly that it is taken regardless of the hawkish statements and stances by his wife, Samantha, who occupies no official political position, outgoing Chief of the Defence Staff, General Sir David Richards,  and those by Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, who said that no option was being taken off the table when it came to Syria. The only practical and workable option is through secular, sane and wise politics.


Dr. Mohammad Abdo Al-Ibrahim

Foreign Terrorists

According to the Time, as many as 6,000 foreign fighters from nearly 50 nations have now joined the war against the Syrians. The vast majority are "veterans" from Libya, Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Somalia, Iraq, Jordan, Turkey and a few former Soviet republics bolster their ranks.

The British Daily pointed out that surprising estimates suggest that Australians now make up the largest contingent from any developed nation fighting in Syrian. There are around 120 French fighters in Syria, about 100 Britons and a handful of Americans — but there are at least 200 Australians, according to a public statement made by David Irvine, director general of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO).

The French, British and American jihadists are drawn from communities that number 4.7 million, 2.7 million and 2.6 million respectively. The Australian contingent is drawn from a Muslim population of just 500,000, and is causing concern to a government that fears the homecoming of a battle-hardened group of radicalized Islamists when the conflict ends.

In February, Norwegian terrorism expert Thomas Hegghammer released a paper showing that 1 in 9 Westerners who fight in foreign jihadist insurgencies ends up becoming involved in terrorist plots back home. With evidence that more than 100 Australian terrorists  in Syria with Jabhat al-Nusra, an al-Qaeda-linked militia.

According to Greg Barton, international director of Monash University’s Global Terrorism Research Centre, “It’s very difficult to get hard data or proof on what’s really going on. But the head of ASIO doesn’t come out and make public statements very often, so the fact that he’s talking about this shows how much of a concern this is. ”

 “The number of Australian terrorists in Syria is far higher than a few hundred,” says Jamal Daoud, a Jordanian migrant who stood as a candidate for the New South Wales (NSW) legislature during the last state polls. “I have been talking to community members for years now. So many times people have told me ‘my neighbor is fighting in Syria’ or ‘I am selling our furniture so I can go fight in Syria.’”

According to the British Daily, Australian counterterrorism operatives have been dispatched to Turkey and Beirut, where they are collecting evidence against a number of Australians suspected of fighting in Syria.

Barton points out that many of the Australians who have traveled to the war zone come from the northern Lebanese immigrant community — a group that has “experienced disproportionate problems” with organized crime.


Dr. Mohammad Abdo Al-Ibrahim