UN Report: Libyan Arms Transfers to Terrorists in Syria

 UN,NEWYORK,(ST)_ In a new evidence  on the  involvement of Arab and foreign sides  in arming terrorist groups in Syria, a UN  report stressed  that Libya has become a major source of weapons in the region and transfers of arms to Syria had been organized from various locations in Libya, including Misrata and Benghazi, via Turkey or northern Lebanon.

Weapons are spreading from Libya at an "alarming rate," fueling conflicts in Mali, Syria and elsewhere and boosting the arsenals of extremists and criminals in the region, Reuters quoted  a U.N. report published on Tuesday.

The report by the U.N. Security Council's Group of Experts - who monitor an arms embargo imposed on Libya in 2011 said Libya  had become a key source of weapons in the region .

"Illicit flows from the country are fuelling existing conflicts in Africa and the Levant and enriching the arsenals of a range of non-State actors, including terrorist groups," according to the 94-page report, which was dated February 15 but published on Tuesday.

"The proliferation of weapons from Libya continues at an alarming rate," the report said.

"The significant size of some shipments and the logistics involved suggest that representatives of the Libyan local authorities might have at least been aware of the transfers, if not actually directly involved," the experts said.

The experts said they had found that Qatar and the United Arab Emirates had breached the arms embargo on Libya by arming  the Libyan militias noting  that  "some 18 months after the end of the conflict, some of this materiel remains under the control of non-state actors within Libya and has been found in seizures of military materiel being trafficked out of Libya," according to the report.

"Civilians and brigades remain in control of most of the weapons in the country, while the lack of an effective security system remains one of the primary obstacles to securing military materiel and controlling the borders," it said.
The report also pointed to increased flows of weapons from Libya to Egypt dramatically over the past year.

"While trafficking from Libya to Egypt represents a challenge primarily for Egypt's internal security, in particular in relation to armed groups in the Sinai, some of the materiel appears to have crossed Egypt to further destinations, including the Gaza Strip," the experts wrote.

Weapons from Libya were also being transported through southern Tunisia, southern Algeria and northern Niger to destinations such as Mali, but some arms were remaining in those corridor countries for use by local groups, the report indicated.

Several  media reports disclosed operations of  providing  terrorist groups in Syria with weapons to prevent a political solution based on dialogue including US by the Republican senator Rand Paul who  earlier in  February admitted  dispatching  of weapons from Libya to Syria under US supervision of U.S. besides  reports indicated that  Croatian capital Zagreb became  to a transit point for weapons and ammunition to terrorist groups in Syria and the involvement of Washington and its  allies in training terrorists in camps in Jordan.


T. Fateh

Armed force repel a bid to blast lorry in Idleb

PROVINCE,(ST)_Units of armed forces foiled on Tuesday a suicide terrorist's attempt to explode a lorry packed with three tons of explosives on Idleb-alMastomeh road in Idleb Province.

"The explosives were put between sacks of potatoes", an official source told SANA, adding that the armed forces dismantled the booby-trapped lorry.

Meanwhile, other units of armed forces shelled terrorists' hideouts and vehicles in countryside of Damascus, Daraa and Homs, killing and injuring a lot of terrorists.

On the other hand, an explosive device was dismantled today by a unit of armed forces in Jaramana suburb in Damascus countryside.

The terrorists attached the explosive device to a car parked in al-Baledeyeh street in Jaramana, according to SANA.

Al-Ekhbareya al-Soreya TV Channel reported that armed forces clashed with terrorists near Salheddin citadel in Lattakia and killed most of them.

It was also reported that terrorists fired two mortar rounds on Kafer Soseh area in Damascus, with reports of several causalities.

Syria is in a state of war and its army is doing its duty as regard defending homeland and citizens, and fighting terrorist groups to restore stability and security to the country.

The terrorist groups, who are exported from 40 countries, perpetrate heinous crimes against citizens and destroy the country's infrastructure, are funded and supported by Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Britain, France, and the US.


Foreign Ministry: Terrorist Bombings, Random Shelling against Civilians Characterize Armed Groups Activities


DAMASCUS, (ST) - The repeated suicide bombings and the random targeting of civilian districts in Damascus and many Syrian provinces with mortar shells have characterized the activities of the foreign and regional-backed armed terrorist groups in Syria, the Foreign and Expatriates Ministry said on Tuesday, citing as an example the latest terrorist suicide explosion which rocked the Sabe' Bahrat and al-Shahbandar areas in Damascus and which claimed the lives of innocent Syrians and caused huge material damage.

In  two identical letters to President of the UN Security Council and the United Nation Chief, the Ministry said that these terrorist attacks have been targeting civil institutions including education, media, cultural, medical, religious and humanitarian facilities. The political and financial support being provided by foreign and regional countries to the armed groups and mercenaries in Syria allows perpetrators to give no heed to laws and makes them think that they will keep away from any kind of accountability in the light of the double standard policies of some countries as regards their commitment to fighting international terrorism.

The Ministry pointed out that the Arab League's (AL)  latest decision, which was adopted in March 26th, 2013 and which called for arming and financing terrorists, has evidently proved the AL's carelessness about countries' legal obligations concerning terrorism fighting and it turned the AL to be a tool for destabilizing the region.

The Ministry's letter stressed that making the political settlement efforts to solve the crisis in Syria based on national dialogue a success, necessitates from the countries which provide funding, training, arming and sheltering to terrorist groups to halt such a policy as it violates their international obligations as well as UN resolutions.

"Syria reiterates its call on the Security Council to adopt a firm and clear stance that confirms its keenness to fight terrorism  and sends a message to the terrorists and the countries backing them stressing that the international community is serious about fighting this plague wherever it is and whenever it happens," the Ministry said.

It concluded by affirming Syria's determination to combat terrorism and chase the terrorists through carrying out the Syrian Arab Army's duty to defend the integrity of the homeland and its national institutions and to preserve the state's sovereignty.


H. Mustafa                 

Syrian Youths' Role in Enhancing Dialogue, Abandoning Violence Stressed

DAMASCUS, (ST) - The Syrian youths have a very important role in building renewable Syria as they are the hope of the nation in achieving an all-out development. They represent the open-minded, tolerant and moderate generation vis a vis the criminal Takfiri thinking, said Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi.

The remarks were made during the meeting of the ministerial Committee tasked with following up the implementation of the political program to solve the crisis in Syria with a group of promising Syrian youths.

The Premier focused on the young Syrians role in enhancing the culture of dialogue, tolerance and amity and in abandoning violence in order to create a suitable environment to accelerate the process of holding a comprehensive national dialogue conference which is the only way out of the crisis.

Al-Halqi reviewed the economic situation in Syria under the economic challenges and the global war Syria is facing, stressing the national economy's ability to overcome these challenges and meet citizens' needs. He appreciated the Syrian Arab Army's efforts aiming to rid the country from terrorists and affirmed that the government insists on attaining security and stability nationwide.

For their part, the Syrian youths renewed their support for the political program to solve the crisis, appreciating the government's efforts to enhance the national economy and help the Syrian people withstand the conspiracy.

They presented their views and suggestions to enrich the forthcoming dialogue conference and concentrated on promoting confidence and tolerance among the people of the homeland, tackling the kidnapped and detainees issue, fighting administrative and financial corruption and attaining a balanced and sustainable development, improving socio-economic conditions of rural areas and creating job opportunities for the youths.

Following the meeting, some of the young participants talked to the press about the importance of the meeting as being an opportunity for the youths to contribute to solving the crisis. They stressed that the current circumstances necessitate from all to contribute to saving Syria by making the political solution a success.


H. Mustafa       

Premier, Patriarchs for Coexistence Among Syrians

DAMASCUS,(ST)_ Prime Minister Dr. Wael al-Halqi on Monday visited the  Greek Orthodox Patriarchate where he offered  congratulations to Patriarch John X Yazji, Patriarch of Antioch and All the East for Greek  Catholics on the occasion of his investiture.

The Prime Minister also visited the Melkite Greek Catholic Patriarchate, where he met with Patriarch Gregory III Laham, Patriarch of Antioch, Alexandria and Jerusalem of the Melkite Greek Catholic.

Talks during the two meetings dealt with  the importance that Syria remains a country of tolerance and coexistence for all its people as an  example to followed .

The Prime Minister stressed the  important role of clerics and scholars  in disseminating awareness under  the crisis experienced by Syria in order to preserve the social fabric and national cohesion among all Syrian people, indicating that Syria is under a war  that in its large part aims  at inciting and instigating extremist ideas that differentiate one country 's people.

He also indicated the  positive role of the Church in giving up  violence ,terrorism, extremism and called for tolerance, fraternity and consolidation of national unity among all Syrian components and social factions.

Both Patriarch Yazji and Patriarch Lahham stressed the  need for solidarity and joint Syrian efforts to confront hostile attempts targeting Syria 's  history and heritage and the Syrian  Islamic-Christian  fabrics , stressing  that the Syrians will remain united  under co-existence based on amity  and mutual respect.

The Premier was accompanied  in the visit by  Deputy Prime Minister for Services Affairs and Minister of Local Administration ,  and the Ministers of Al-Awqaf, the Interior, Transport,  and Minister of State for Red Crescent Affairs.


T. Fateh

Extremists Resort to Escalation to Prevent Political Solution- Jamil

DAMASCUS,(ST)_ Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Minister of local Trade and Consumer Protection Qadri Jamil stressed  that extremist forces at home and abroad, which  are scared of a political solution resort to various forms of escalation to prevent a political solution, which is backed by the vast majority of Syrians.

"The language of dialogue and halting  violence are, in general,  progressing in the Syrian street  by the various political forces, but some affected  sides in the West , Arab states and the opposition do  not want the political  solution , a matter which prompts some to carry out criminal and terrorist acts,"  Jamil said in an interview with Al-Manar on Monday  night.


He  explained that terrorist bombings will not intimidate the Syrian people, but even enhance their determination to proceed into a political solution in order to find a safe outlet to the crisis, pointing out that the most important victory to be achieved by the Syrians is to stop violence ,start dialogue and open the way before a comprehensive political solution.

He continued  that the achievements of the Syrian army forces which  prevent indirect foreign interference and working  in parallel on the political solution  provide  very important results and open horizons that  were closed months earlier  before solutions aspired by the  Syrian people.

He continued that  the most important achievements in the last period is the political program to resolve the crisis which was approved by the Syrian government  and the State Committee in charge has so far made great achievements through its intensive contacts with all forces  concerned , pointing out that very important breakthroughs  are expected during  coming weeks  with forces never expected to sit on the table for preliminary talks.

He indicated the lack of  confidence between all parties and the need to build bridges of trust , noting that " the political program gave assurances and the  coming days and weeks will make us build bridges of trust with powers  that approved to join the dialogue but cast doubt on its potential, such as the "coordinating body " at home and abroad ", adding that the government looks for ways to communicate with them and sit at the table for  preliminary talks , and  that the atmosphere is not negative in this direction."


T. Fateh

Al-Halqi hopes to expand development relations with Iran

DAMASCUS (ST)-Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi has asserted the deeply rooted relations between Syria and Iran and the role played by it in promoting economic and trade relations.

During the meeting held with Iranian Ambassador to Syria Mohammad Rida Shibani, al-Halqi underlined the importance of expanding economic, trade and development between the two countries through easing measures, eradicating administrative bureaucracy, reactivating the signed agreements and signing new ones.

The talks also dealt with means of enhancing cooperation in the field oil, medicine, finance, banking, food supplies  and consumption.

Al-Halqi thanked the Iranian government and people for their firm stances towards the Syrian leadership and people in the face of the conspiracy targeting them and in enhancing steadfastness of the Syrian people.

The Premier outlined victories of our brave army achieved in eliminating the armed terrorists groups, referring that the government seeks to consolidate the culture of dialogue, tolerance and abandoning violence for launching the comprehensive national dialogue conference.

“The government also works to ensure citizens’ daily life needs and to support potentials of the national economy which is still strong and able to confront challenges as a step to realize a financial and economic stability in the Syrian market”, al-Haqi added.

From his part, the Ambassador Shibani expressed his country’s support to Syria, voicing his trust in the two countries’ capability as regards confronting the challenges, defeating aggression forces and foiling US-Zionist schemes in the region.   

O. Al-Mohammad