14/12/2012 - Aleppo - Al Bab - Friday protests
#Syria Nov 20/12
Al-Bab - A father lost 10 of his family members (Al-Mashoud family) 20-11-2012
Mahmoud was in Turkey since 2 months got hit when they bombed our home from the air, so I had my wife, my son Ahmed, his wife, his daughter and my sister with her 4 sons I had them all martyred; now I got Mahmoud also died in Turkey and we brought him back today
The accident was the plane hit our home with 2 explosive barrels…
People who died here we buried them here, and Mahmoud we rushed him to Turkey for medical aid, he was there for 2 months, and yesterday he died, we can only praise Allah for anything… and today we brought him back
So the reason is the barrels? the barrels from the plane?
Actually I was in hospital, and after I woke up, people were speaking that I am a terrorist and my son was a member of a battalion who were fighting around, and we have an ammo car being shipped out from the house… these are the claims I was hearing after I got out of hospital…
This is all false talking… May Allah suffices and aid us
We had the worst unjust leader, what will he answer tomorrow to the great Allah?
Takbeer, Allahu Akbar
Takbeer, Allahu Akbar
Translation by Syrian Freedom team
DAMASCUS (AFP) - Grisly footage of apparent atrocities in Syria triggered outrage Monday, as regime forces bombarded rebel strongholds around Damascus and launched a mass raid in the historic heart of the capital.
The graphic videos posted on YouTube showed what appeared to be rebels callously throwing bodies off a post office building in a city near the northern metropolis of Aleppo, while another showed a man, blindfolded and bound, as his throat was savagely cut.
Fighting was also raging in the northern metropolis of Aleppo, where security forces were advancing on an opposition-held district but where all communications have reportedly been cut.
With the international community deadlocked over how to end 17 months of bloodshed, the opposition umbrella group the Syrian National Council appealed for the establishment of no-fly zones.
And in a new blow for embattled President Bashar al-Assad, Syria’s top representative at the UN Human Rights Council said he has defected, the latest in a line of senior officials to flee the regime.
International concern is mounting over how to end a conflict that has triggered a major humanitarian crisis and sent hundreds of thousands of Syrians fleeing, with at least 100 people being killed daily.
Foreign ministers of Muslim states hold talks in Saudi Arabia Monday while the UN Security Council — which has so far failed to reach a consensus on how to stop the bloodshed — meets on Thursday to debate the future of its mission.
In one shocking amateur video posted Monday, several bodies were seen crumpled on the ground outside a post office building in Al-Bab city before another three are hurled from the rooftop as the crowd cries “This is a shabiha,” referring to the pro-government militia.
In another, a group of men forced a blindfolded man, with his hands tied behind his back, down to the ground in Aleppo while an assailant forced what appeared to be a small knife repeatedly across his throat as his blood spurted.
“If these videos are confirmed, such atrocities harm the revolution. They only benefit the regime and the enemies of the revolution,” Syrian Observatory for Human Rights director Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP.
Both sides in the increasingly vicious conflict have been accused of human rights violations as reports of cold-blooded killings mount, although the authenticity of the latest videos could not be verified.
Also Monday, security forces arrested residents in a major operation in the heart of Damascus, including the historic Old City, while shells slammed into rebel strongholds around the capital from before dawn, according to the Britain-based Observatory.
It was biggest operation of its kind in the city since the launch of the uprising against Assad, the Observatory said.
It said 21 people had been arrested and that security forces also swept into a graveyard “under the pretext of searching for weapons”, while other activists said the troops had broken down the doors of shops closed in a show of defiance against the regime.
The Observatory said 50 people had been killed on Monday, including 28 civilians in violence across the country.
In Aleppo Monday, government troops were advancing on the southwestern rebel stronghold of Sukari, security sources in Damascus said. The Observatory meanwhile said opposition fighters attacked a key air force intelligence branch in the western Zahraa district.
Fighting also broke out in the southwestern district of Salaheddin, which rebels fled last week but has seen continued clashes since, it said.
The fate of Aleppo — Syria’s largest city — is seen as potential turning point in the conflict whose outcome will have major repercussions for Syria’s neighbours and the military and geopolitical balance of power in the region
More than 21,000 people have been killed across Syria since Assad’s regime launched its brutal crackdown on dissent, with fighting escalating after the failure of former envoy Kofi Annan’s peace plan.
Abdel Basset Sayda, who heads the opposition Syrian National Council, told AFP that the rebels wanted “two no-fly zones, one in the north, close to the Turkish border, and another in the south, close to the border with Jordan,” in addition to “safe places for refugees and humanitarian corridors.”
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton held talks in Turkey at the weekend, after Washington imposed a new round of sanctions on Syria, saying their “number one goal” was to hasten the end of Assad’s regime.
Foreign ministers of Muslim states were meeting Monday in Jeddah ahead of an Islamic summit Tuesday hosted by regional powerhouse Saudi Arabia on the Syria crisis.
UN humanitarian chief Valerie Amos said she will visit Syria and Lebanon from Tuesday.
31/07/2012 #Syria: Rebels claim victory in Syria’s al-Bab town
Opposition claims to have pushed regime forces from what they say was military’s last urban base outside Aleppo city.
Government forces withdrew from the town of al-Bab, according to rebel forces, who claim it was the army’s last urban base in the region outside of Aleppo city.
The people of al-Bab took a captured government tank on a victory lap around the town after the army fled and its prized military assets were left behind.
Despite the freeing of the army base, and the capture of the tank, not all threats of violence are over for the town.
There is still danger in the air, with planes and helicopters flying overhead almost every day.
Al Jazeera’s Anita McNaught reports from Aleppo province.
BEIRUT (AP) — Humanitarian conditions have grown even more dire in the besieged Syria city of Aleppo with activists reporting on Tuesday dwindling stocks of food and cooking gas and only intermittent electricity supplies as droves of residents flee 11 days of intense clashes between rebels and regime forces.
Government helicopters pounded rebel neighborhoods across Syria’s largest city and main commercial hub. Activists said the random shelling has forced many civilians to flee to other neighborhoods or even escape the city altogether. The U.N. said late Sunday that about 200,000 had fled the city of about 3 million.
“The humanitarian situation here is very bad,” Mohammed Saeed, an activist living in the city, told The Associated Press by Skype. “There is not enough food and people are trying to leave. We really need support from the outside. There is random shelling against civilians,” he added. “The city has pretty much run out of cooking gas, so people are cooking on open flames or with electricity, which cuts out a lot.”
He said shells were falling on the southwestern neighborhoods of Salaheddine and Seif al-Dawla, rebel strongholds since the rebel Free Syrian Army began its assault on Aleppo 11 days ago.
The United Nations has expressed concern over the use of heavy weapons, especially in Aleppo, while the Syria’s neighbors in the Arab League have issued even stronger denunciations.
“The massacres that are happening in Aleppo and other places in Syria amount to war crimes that are punishable under international law,” Arab League Secretary-General Nabil Elaraby said following a meeting in Cairo at the League’s headquarters.
The official Syrian news agency said government forces were pursuing the “remnants of armed terrorist groups” in Salaheddine and inflicting heavy losses. President Bashar Assad’s authoritarian regime regularly refers to opposition fighters as terrorists.
But the rebels denied that the government has succeeded in penetrating the neighborhood with its tanks.
Rebels have captured a number of government tanks in operations against army positions outside the city, including the town of al-Bab and the village of Anand. Saeed said they planned to use them in future operations.
The taking of Anand has also opened the road to the Turkish border, where the rebels get many of their supplies and manpower. It also the main escape route for refugees streaming out of Aleppo.
Many of those who have fled may be taking refuge with relatives in the countryside, remaining inside Syria, while others reached the camps inside the Turkey.
“The helicopters were hurting people because the regime couldn’t enter the neighborhoods, so they were shelling from a distance with helicopters and artillery,” said Mohammed Nabehan, who had fled Aleppo for the Kilis refugee camp just across the border.
He said the humanitarian situation in the city was serious and there was little food.
According Turkish prime minister’s office, there are some 44,000 Syrian refugees being sheltered in tent cities and temporary housing in camps along the border. While Turkish authorities say they have yet to see a massive upsurge in refugees from Aleppo, they are prepared to house up to 100,000.
Jordan, for its part, has also begun building a tent camp to house refugees along the border — something it was initially reluctant to do for fear of embarrassing Syria by calling attention to its refugee problem. But with 142,000 Syrians having already fled across the border, according to the Jordanian government, they needed to create the facilities to house them all. Jordan said this week that up to 2,000 new refugees are arriving daily.
While there had initially been speculation that Assad’s regime might be in serious danger from the rebels, especially after a bomb killed four top security officials in Damascus on July 18, the core of the army has remained intact and the fight looks set to be prolonged.
A high-ranking Western diplomat familiar with the intelligence assessments on Syria said most expected the civil war to be a drawn-out affair.
There is also a great deal of concern in the West over the flow of foreign militants into Syria to fight a jihad, or holy war, against Assad’s regime, said the diplomat, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss such matters.
Militants from Chechnya, Yemen, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan have been joining the rebels in significant numbers entering by way of Iraq and Lebanon and bringing along skills gleaned from battling the Americans and Russians, the diplomat added.
Syria has long branded the opposition as being foreign-funded “terrorist mercenaries” even when the anti-government movement was overwhelmingly peaceful and Syrian. Now, however, it appears that elements involved in militant jihads are increasingly joining the fight.
In the past month, the rebels have demonstrated greater capabilities and have mounted the biggest challenges to the regime so far in the 17-month-old uprising. They have been fielding more effective forces with better weaponry.
Saudi Arabia and Qatar have both expressed a willingness to fund the rebellion and are believed to be sending money to rebels to purchase weapons. On Tuesday, the official Saudi Press Agency said a week-long national campaign to support “our brothers in Syria” had collected $117 million dollars in cash donations to outfit relief convoys for Syrian refugees.
06/23/12 #Syria Smoke rises heavily above Al Bab, Aleppo, after shelling and helicopter strikes