Syria

UPDATE: NBC News Chief Foreign Correspondent Richard Engel Escapes Unharmed After Being Held Captive for 5 Days

December 17, 2012

“NBC’s chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel said Tuesday he and members of his network crew escaped unharmed after five days of captivity in Syria.”

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Syrian Rebels: We received training in Jordan from Britain and the U.S. weeks before President Obama Recognized the Syrian Opposition

December 17, 2012

“American officials, citing concerns that they didn’t know the political leanings of anti-Assad groups, have said repeatedly that they aren’t providing weapons to the rebels, leaving that to countries such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia.”

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Activists: Syria Dealing with a Major Food Shortage that could lead to Starvation

December 17, 2012

“The activists also renewed charges that the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad appears to have targeted the food chain by bombing bakeries throughout rebel-controlled areas.”

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Russia Denies Changing its Support from the Syrian Government to the Syrian Rebels

December 15, 2012

“The remarks, made by the deputy Foreign Minister and Middle East Envoy Mikhail Bogdanov, were greeted by the US and its allies as a sign that Russia was edging away from its support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.”

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United States Deploys 400 Troops to the Syrian-Turkish Border to operate two Patriot Missile Systems

December 15, 2012

“Pentagon press secretary George Little told reporters the U.S. troops operating the Patriots will be tasked with a defensive mission only. The surface-to-air missiles could technically be used to enforce a no-fly zone over northern Syria.”

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Mortar Attack Strikes a School near Damascus, killing 9 Students and their Teacher

December 15, 2012

“Although the attack was confirmed by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the identity of the attackers remains unknown. Syria’s state news agency reported that an unspecified group of rebels shelled the school.”

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United States Formally Designates Syria’s Al Nusra Front as a Terrorist Organization

December 12, 2012

“The move, which was expected, is aimed at building Western support for the rebellion against the government of President Bashar al-Assad by quelling fears that money and arms meant for the rebels would flow to a jihadi group.”

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President Obama: United States Formally Recognizes the Syrian Opposition

December 12, 2012

“Mr. Obama’s announcement, in an interview with Barbara Walters of ABC News on the eve of a meeting in Morocco of the Syrian opposition leaders and their supporters, was widely expected.”

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Graphic Video Posted to YouTube Shows Syrian Rebels Forcing a Child to Behead an Unarmed Prisoner

December 10, 2012

“The video shows a child cutting a bound prisoner’s head off with a machete. Militants then display the man’s severed head while chanting “Allahu Akbar,” or “God is great.””

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Russian Ambassador to NATO: NATO’s Deployment of Patriot Missiles to the Turkish-Syrian Border Raises Tension

December 10, 2012

“Earlier this week, NATO foreign ministers approved Turkey’s request for the deployment of Patriot air defense batteries on Turkey’s border with Syria.”

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Russian Foreign Minister: Biggest Threat Surrounding Syrian Chemical Weapons is if Syrian Rebels Acquire Them

December 10, 2012

“The Syrian government does not intend, and has never planned, to use chemical weapons against rebel forces, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said, addressing rumors the that the Assad regime is preparing to use its chemical weapons arsenal.”

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Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: U.S. and Russia Committed to Promoting a Peaceful Political Transition in Syria

December 8, 2012

“Clinton stressed, however, that the U.S. would insist once again that Assad’s departure be a key part of that transition, a position not shared by the Russians.”

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Senator John McCain (R-AZ) on Syrian Chemical Weapons: We Are on the Precipice of the Most Horrendous Act of the 21st Century

December 8, 2012

“”I don’t think there is any doubt this is a — we are on the precipice of one of the more horrendous acts, or the most horrendous act, certainly, of the 21st century.”"

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Report: U.S. and Allies Have Hired Contractors to Train Syrian Rebels in Chemical Weapons Security

December 7, 2012

“The diplomatic sources say defense contractors hired by the US and its European allies have recently conducted training exercises with Syrian rebel forces in Turkey and Jordan.”

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House Intelligence Chairman Mike Rogers (R-MI): We Must Attack if Syria Deploys Chemical Weapons

December 7, 2012

“The red line for U.S. military intervention in Syria must be if Syria deploys their chemical weapons, not if they actually use them, according to House Intelligence Chairman Mike Rogers (R-MI).”

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