Al-Halqi to Yazigy: clergymen play key role in preserving Syrians' unity

DAMASCUS,(ST)_Prime Minister has said that the conspirators are trying to target the national economy after  failing at the military and political levels.

Dr. Wael al-Halqi has underscored  the political outrage over the ongoing crisis in the country which indicates the desire to bring about suitable solutions.

He was speaking as he met with Patriarch Yohn X Yazigy of Antioch and All the East.

 According to SANA, the gathering today dealt with the role of Muslim and Christian clergymen in mobilizing capabilities to preserve the Syrian people's unity through promulgating the culture of love and tolerance as well as explaining the real image of religions.

The premier cited that the current circumstances promote an opportunity for the Syrians to reconsider the economic and educational policies to bolster their steadfastness vis-a`-vis any emergency. 

"Government is relentlessly working to ensure the factors of steadfastness," he said, pointing out that an economic, political, media and social war are being waged against the country.

For his part, the patriarch said: "Despite the circumstances, the Syrians are giving lessons to the others on unity, perseverance in achieving victory, and protecting their homeland."

He stressed that the three-stage political plan outlined by President Bashar al-Assad is the only outlet to restore peace and security to Syria.

The Patriarch separately met Awqaf (Endowment) Minister and the Republic's Grand Mufti.

The talks focused on the Takfiri and provocative calls and Fatwas issued to serve the western agenda. 

Basma Qaddour  

Information Minister: Syria Still Committed to Political Solution, National Dialogue

DAMASCUS, (ST)- The political leadership in Syria is still committed to the political solution it has proposed  since the beginning of the crisis, underscored Information Minister Omran al-Zou'bi  on Monday.

Al-Zou'bi, who was speaking to a crowd celebrating the 50th Foundation Anniversary of "al-Thawra" newspaper, stressed that Syria believes in national dialogue as the core of political solution and that there is no place for non-Syrian parties in this dialogue.

He described all who talk in sectarian or ethnic language to promote their culture or create divisions among people of the homeland as traitors and that their behavior amounts to treason, stressing that Syria itself is a national identity with special

characteristics and features.

Commenting on the Moslem Brotherhood (MB) experience in power, al-Zou'bi said this political party has failed as it hasn't been able to provide a successful type of leadership.

"Within only one year, Moslem Brotherhood in Egypt has defamed the Egyptian state and provided the worst type of experience in leadership," al-Zou'bi said.

The minister pointed out that the (MB)  has extraordinary ability to undermine the state political system and national unity which were their first victims in Egypt.

On the situation in Turkey, al-Zou'bi said "it has become evident that the Justice and Development Party in Turkey has proved to be invalid to lead a state with diverse political, social and cultural life."  

H. Mustafa

Presidential law tightens up penalties on recruiting child soldiers

DAMASCUS,(ST)_President Bashar Al-Assad issued on Sunday  law No.11 for the year 2013 stipulating the addition of  a new article to the penal code  concerning the recruitment of children in fighting.

The new article provides the sentencing of everyone recruiting a child under the age of 18 in fighting or any relevant act to 10-20 years in hard labor  in addition to paying a fine of SP 1-3 million.

The sentence is to be intensified to life imprisonment in  case that the act caused a physical incapacity to the child , or he (the child) is being sexually assaulted, or given any type of narcotics.

Under the new article, the death penalty will be handed down if the child dies in fighting or in any relevant act. 

Basma Qaddour

Syrian Arab army imposes control over Raqqa's Ayn Issa town, advances in Barzeh suburb

PROVINCES,(ST)_Fresh developments were reportedly notched up today against foreign- backed terrorists in the country's northern and southern provinces.

The first development is summarized by officially declaring that Ayn Issa town, located just 55 Km north-west of Raqaa city, became under the army's control after crushing terrorists who were wrecking havoc on it.

While the second came few hours later as the army imposed control over two quarters -al-Sweda and Talet alMestah- in Barzeh suburb, east of Damascus countryside.

The third occurred in  northern Aleppo province when the armed forces took control of several buildings in the quarters of Saif alDawleh and al-Zebdeyeh.

These developments coincided with shelling many of the terrorists' hideouts in several areas outside Damascus, Aleppo, Homs, Der Ezzour, and Daraa.

12 terrorists killed outside the capital

As many as 10 terrorists and 2 ringleaders were eliminated in the operations launched outside the capital in  Eastern Ghouta (in al-Khameseyeh and Der Salman towns), and the eastern suburbs of Damascus countryside (in Harasta, alQabon, Jobar, and Barzeh) as well as the southern ones (in alDyabeyeh area).

However, clashes broke out in the old city of Aleppo and the surrounding of Aleppo central prison which resulted in killing an unknown number of foreign-backed terrorists.

More terrorists were reportedly perished in several quarters and towns in the central Homs province when the armed forces targeted their hideouts.

Mopping-up operations in Homs

On the other hand, the armed forces found mortar shells, booby-traps and tunnels during mopping up operations in the farms surrounding al-Qaryatain city (in Homs)on which the army imposed control yesterday.

3 terrorist ringleaders eliminated in Der Ezzour

In the Eastern Der Ezzour province, at least 3 terrorist ringleaders and many  gangsters were killed when they tried to attack a garrison in alMre'eueh town.

An official source stated that other terrorists were killed during clashes in al-Hwiqa, al-Hamedeyeh, al-Sena'a, and al-Ardi quarter, adding that weapons of the terrorists at al-Seyaseh quarter in the city were destroyed by a unit of the armed forces.

In Lattakia countryside, a unit of the armed forces eliminated a terrorist ringleader from Libya and many gangsters in a qualitative operation.

The operation, according to a military source, resulted also in destroying an explosive-laden car and heavy machine guns. 

Another terrorist ringleader from Jordan and lots of gangsters were reportedly killed in Sison town in the southern Daraa province. 

Terrorists quarrel over splitting loots 

Meanwhile, quarrels broke out among terrorist groups in al-Msefreh town (in Daraa province) and al-Mayadeen city (in Der Ezzour province) over splitting loots which ended in the death of dozens of terrorists.

Terrorists shoot down a helicopter

In another incident, terrorists shot down a helicopter carrying civil employees from the Education Ministry and basic education certificate - exam papers over Nubl city in Aleppo province.

Prime Minister, Dr.Wael al-Halqi, condemned the terrorist attack which caused the martyrdom of the helicopter's crew and 7 educational members. 

Explosion in Kesweh town

In the evening, the Syrian TV reported that at least 10 citizens have been wounded by detonation of an explosive device pasted to a car in al-Kesweh town outside Damascus.

An official source clarified that the explosive device pasted to a car parking at al-Kesweh square was detonated by remote control.

"Ten citizens were wounded and several shops  damaged at the scene," the source added.    


Laham: Syria Ready to Cooperate with World Parliaments to Solve Crisis

DAMASCUS,(ST)_ Parliament Speaker Jihad al-Laham  stressed the role of world  parliamentarians in support of efforts to promote peace and fight against terrorism and the need for parliaments  neutrality and objectivity in dealing with events.

Meeting yesterday the Secretary General of the Mediterranean Sergio Byazeh , Laham  pointed  the need to see the reality of events in Syria and convey  a true picture to the world public opinion about international terrorism , resulted from  media monochrome which serves  Western countries agendas , stressing that  countries that support terrorism in Syria practiced deception on their peoples , alleging support for  freedom and democracy.

He spoke about  terrorism posed on Syria at the hands of the takfiri terrorist groups brought in  from all over the world under the coordination of Arab and Western  intelligence  with the aim to hit Syria a country of tolerance and co-existence through the dissemination of obscurantist thoughts  based on murder ,rejection of the other and sabotage of the social fabric in Syria and distorting the Syrian civilization.

He called on the Mediterranean parliament  to push  neighboring countries to stop supporting terrorists, and come up with a political parliamentary  initiative to encourage a peaceful  political solution in Syria, stressing that the Syrian parliament is ready to cooperate with all world parliaments to ensure political solution that guarantees political pluralism with the participation of all  Syrians  .

For his part, Byazeh pointed  Mediterranean parliament 's care  on the security and stability of Syria and to support efforts to bring peace and convey a true picture on the nature  of events, pointing out that Syria's pays for mistakes of the international community in Iraq and Afghanistan .


Byazeh stressed that there is a difference between what is  rumored in the media and true information owned by the governments of some countries , noting  a document issued by recent meeting the EU Political Committee on the  heavy presence of armed foreigners in Syria, noting that this document, a copy of  which he had received through the High Commissioner  for Policy Foreign and security in the European Union Catherine Ashton , is the first document issued by the Union talking  about the presence of extremist elements fighting in Syria.


T. Fateh 

Syrian Arab army advances in Homs, tracks terrorists nationwide

PROVINCES ,(ST)_Units of the armed forces continue tracking down foreign-backed terrorists and inflict heavy losses upon them  across the country.

Today, the armed forces pounded many hideouts and arms caches of terrorists in several towns in the Eastern Ghouta and in Doma, Harasta, Barzeh, Hajjira, alHseneyeh, alDyabeyeh and Der Ateyeh areas outside Damascus province.

Dozens of terrorists, most of them are affiliated to al-Nusra Front, were reportedly eliminated in the aforementioned areas.

Simultaneously, the armed forces advanced in alKhaledeyeh quarter in  central Homs province after killing a lot of terrorists there (in Homs)  few days ago.

Elsewhere, the armed forces crushed an  unknown number of terrorist groups and shelled many machine guns in several areas in Aleppo, Daraa, Der Ezzour, and Idlib provinces.

Shells hit 4 quarters in the capital

In another development, terrorists fired four mortar shells on al-Mazraa, al-Amara, al-Tejara and al-Qabon quarters in the capital.

The first shell landed today morning on 'Abdallah Ibn al-Zobair' School near al-Iman Mosque in al-Mazrraa quarter, while the second landed on Ahmad 'al-Mandili' School in al-Amara quarter.

shells left serious damages at the scenes. No one was hurt.

In the evening, a third shell landed on the United Industrial Commercial Company "al-Khomasia" in al-Qabon quarter causing fire in one of the company's storehouses.

The fourth landed in a garden inside a home in al-Tejara quarter which left two children wounded and massive damage at the scene.

4 citizens martyred in Homs and Hassaka

Another terrorist attack also targeted alAbbaseyeh quarter in Homs city claiming  3 lives and leaving 6 others wounded.

The wounded were admitted to hospitals, a medical source said.

Last night, a citizen was martyred and 7 others wounded by detonation of an explosive device planted by terrorists near the court in al-Hassakeh province.


Syria Welcomes Security Council Resolution No. 2107 on Iraq: Foreign Ministry Source

DAMASCUS, (ST) - Syria welcomes the UN Security Council's Resolution No. 2107 which settles Iraq's situation under Chapter VII of UN Charter, a Foreign and Expatriates Ministry Source said on Saturday.

In a statement to SANA, the source added that Syria, who followed up with great interest the Security Council's sessions on Iraq,  welcomes the resolution since it ends a long era of suffering caused to the brotherly Iraqi people and removes the last obstacle for Iraq to restore its full sovereignty and key role in the region and the world.

"Syria Congratulates the Iraqi people and government on the issuance of this resolution and expresses confidence that Iraq, which get rid of the Chapter VII relevant obligations will be keen to enhance its national unity and it economic and social progress. It will go ahead with fighting the terrorism which claimed the lives of many Iraqi nationals, because some regional countries' have adopted the policy of supporting terrorism, extremism, sectarianism and takfiri thinking as their official policy," the source said.

It added that Syria seizes the chance to affirm its readiness to completely cooperate with Iraq in all domains so as to consolidate bilateral ties in the service of attaining security, stability and prosperity in the region.

On Friday, the Security Council unanimously agreed to terminate the measures provided in some paragraphs of International resolutions No. 686 and 687 adopted by the Security Council in 1991 after Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.

H. Mustafa