News / Middle East

Syria VP Dispels Defection Rumors

Syrian Vice President Farouk Al-Sharaa, meets in Damascus, Syria with Alaeddin Boroujerdi, not shown, the head of Iran's powerful parliamentary committee on national security and foreign policy ending rumors that Al-Sharaa had defected to Jordan, August
Syrian Vice President Farouk Al-Sharaa, meets in Damascus, Syria with Alaeddin Boroujerdi, not shown, the head of Iran's powerful parliamentary committee on national security and foreign policy ending rumors that Al-Sharaa had defected to Jordan, August
VOA News
Syrian Vice President Farouk al-Sharaa has appeared in public for the first time in weeks, ending speculation that he had defected from President Bashar al-Assad's embattled government.

The 73-year-old Sunni Muslim met Sunday with a visiting senior Iranian official in Damascus.  Sharaa was last seen in public at a state funeral for security officials who died in a July 18 bomb blast.

The Assad government has seen a number of high-level defections in recent months, and up until Sunday, there had been rumors that Sharaa had defected to Jordan, despite the government's denials.

Meanwhile, a Syrian watchdog group says hundreds of people were killed across the country Saturday.

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the final death toll for the day was 370, with nearly 200 bodies found in Daraya, near the capital.

The number of corpses in Daraya and when they died could not be independently confirmed. However, video footage reported to be from Daraya showed a large group of victims. Syrian forces had focused a five-day onslaught on rebel fighters in the town to regain control of the outskirts of Damascus.

Activists say Syrian forces with tanks and combat helicopters also launched new raids in other cities.

On Saturday, SANA said armed forces killed an unspecified number of "terrorists" in Aleppo and destroyed seven vehicles equipped with machine guns.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

Could Nemtsov Threaten Putin in Death as in Life?

Dynamic and debonair opposition leader had supported liberal economic reforms, criticized Russian president's aggression in Ukraine More

Oil Smuggling Highlights Challenges in Shutting Down IS Finances

Pentagon spokesman says Islamic State 'certainly continues to get revenue from the oil industry black market' but that airstrikes have made a dent More

India Focuses on Infrastructure, Investment to Propel Economy

Government expects economy to grow at 8 to 8.5 percent in next fiscal year More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
 Previous    
by: dyke davis from: USA, San Francisco
August 25, 2012 1:19 PM
It is laughable that the western political and corporate media class cares little or nothing about the widening violence spealing over into Lebanon nor the tragic cost of human life inside Syria where they are pouring weapons, logistics and foreign-terrorist into the attempt to subdue the government of President Assad.
It is true mind-bending to think that human life is treated so cheaply by those whom called themselves civilized and modern.
Attacking this government, while they continue to escape international criminal prosecution for now, a decade of illegal unilateral invasions, mass-deaths, electronic drone assassinations, and a shopping list of other international crimes in the planning.
I, can not fathtom how the human mind can be so horribly twisted to the point that some in our US political and media elites can go to sleep at night knowing that people are being slaughtered by the thousands solely to further some worthless politician's nightmare scenario on how the world should work!
Nothing good will result in these acts of humanity and I hope I'm not anywhere near the moment of retribution that will surely come to those who are responsible for these crimes in Syria.
In Response

by: Ayodotty from: Phoenix
August 26, 2012 3:18 PM
Obviously sad, I just can't believe this is happening today, humans are being slaughter in numbers everyday just like that!
In Response

by: Anonymous
August 26, 2012 3:45 AM
And they call us terrorists!
In Response

by: kt from: Ledyard
August 25, 2012 11:49 PM
I completely agree.

As more lives are lost, the world continues to dig its own grave as the lava of war spills in...
In Response

by: traffikator from: USA
August 25, 2012 10:40 PM
And how did you determine that what is happening in Syria is caused by the western nations in particular USA? The USA has been guilty of a lot of atrocities, I must agree, unfortunately, but Syria? It is one of the last places the USA would like top see destabilized. Can you imagine what would happen if some AL qaeda linked revolutionist got a hold of Syria with all its WMD's? The USA hates that Assad is killing the civilians, but what would like to see the USA do now? Would you like us to put boots on the ground or what? And if we did, who would we support? Be clear and specific in your response and also state what possible outcomes you would hope to achieve and what realisticalyyou think would happen?

by: Michael from: USA
August 25, 2012 10:00 AM
As history in the making the United Nation observers leave Syria, but remain united in the wish for peace, as Ismaili one God, and Christian one Son, in an open channel for present and future cooperation
In Response

by: Mike from: UK
August 26, 2012 7:32 AM
From Wikipedia: The UK based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, SOHR is run out of a two-bedroom terraced home in Coventry, UK, by Rami Abdulrahman (or Rami Abdul Rahman, or Rami Abdelrahman), a Syrian Sunni Muslim who also runs a clothes shop. An information office opposed to the Assad regime.

"Run out of a two bedroom terraced house"! This is hardly a reputably source worth quoting!
Comments page of 2
 Previous    

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More