News / Middle East

Syrian Violence Spreads Again, Islamists Make Gains in North

Lebanese Army soldiers patrol the Sunni Muslim Bab al-Tebbaneh neighborhood in Tripoli, northern Lebanon, December 7, 2012.
Lebanese Army soldiers patrol the Sunni Muslim Bab al-Tebbaneh neighborhood in Tripoli, northern Lebanon, December 7, 2012.
TEXT SIZE - +
VOA News
Fighting in Syria has again spilled over the border into neighboring Lebanon while rebel forces aided by Islamist fighters appeared to make further gains in northern Syria.

Officials in Lebanon said Sunday running gun battles in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli killed at least four people.  The deadly violence pitted Sunni supporters of Syria's rebels in the Bab Tabbaneh neighborhood against Alawites loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the adjacent district of Jabal Mohsen.

Meanwhile, the Syrian president appeared to suffer another blow Sunday when nine judges and prosecutors defected to the opposition.  The judges also made a plea on the Internet, urging others to break ranks with the Assad government.

Syrian government forces also lost ground near Aleppo, where Islamist fighters seized a regional command center.  The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says at least some of the fighters were with the group Jabhat al-Nusra, which is suspected of having ties to al-Qaida.

Some of the latest images coming out of Syria show more destruction and desperation.

Video posted on social media sites Sunday, said to have been recorded in Kfar Lata in Idlib province, shows a group of men trying to pull a body out from under a burning truck.  Elsewhere, families are seen scurrying through the streets after what appears to be an aerial attack.

U.S. and Russian diplomats who met in Geneva Sunday with U.N. peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi agreed that the situation in Syria is "bad and getting worse."  They also said they believe a political solution is still possible.

Sunday's sit-down was a follow-up to a meeting last week between Brahimi, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

Washington wants Mr. Assad to quit and begin a transition to a democratic government, while Moscow opposes Western demands to impose regime change on the Syrian president, a longtime Russian ally.

Lavrov said Sunday Moscow's participation in the Geneva talks does not mean it has softened its position. He said Russia is not conducting any negotiations on the fate of Assad. 

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

 

You May Like

Analysts Warn of Regional Proxy Conflict in Afghanistan

Analysts warn if Kabul’s neighbors do not start to cooperate, competing desires for influence could deteriorate into a bloody proxy war in the country More

Saudi Intelligence Chief Replaced

Bandar bin Sultan came under criticism for supporting al Qaida, prompting King Abdallah to wrest Syria operations away from him in February, handing them to Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef More

Poetry Magazine editor Don Share talks what makes a good poem with VOA's David Byrd

What makes a good poem? And is poetry as viable an art form as it once was? To find out, VOA's David Byrd spoke to Don Share, the editor of Poetry Magazine. More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Anonymous
December 10, 2012 10:29 AM
Lavrov said Russia is not conducting any negotiations on the fate of Assad... But Assad is a criminal killing men women and children/. You know what the world thinks of killers Lavrov? You know what the world thinks of people who support genocide?
Russia needs to be slapped hard, and punished for its lack of interest of the Syrian people. The Syrian people ought to kick the Syrian Navy out as soon as Assad falls. No pipeline, and no navy. I think all ties should be severed with russia and the world should think twice about doing business with Russia in the future. Russias is trying to wash Assads hands but the blood keeps re-appearing.


by: Ishtar from: Jordan
December 09, 2012 9:39 PM
Arabs... that proves that there is no difference between the Arabs... we call them Jordanians, Syrians, Palestinians, Egyptians... but really, there is no difference... they are all Arabs... and for us to keep calling them by the "States" we have imposed on them, is another reason we have not stop colonialism...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid