News / Middle East

Saudi Arabia Raises Military Alertness Over Syria

Jordanian protester accuses Saudi Arabia, United States of masterminding Damascus chemical attack, Amman, Aug. 30, 2013.
Jordanian protester accuses Saudi Arabia, United States of masterminding Damascus chemical attack, Amman, Aug. 30, 2013.
Reuters
— Saudi Arabia, a supporter of rebels fighting to topple President Bashar al-Assad, has raised its level of military alertness in anticipation of a possible Western strike in Syria, sources familiar with the matter said on Friday.
 
The United States has been calling for punitive action against Assad's government for a suspected poison gas attack on a Damascus suburb on Aug. 21 that killed hundreds of people.
 
Saudi Arabia's defense readiness has been raised to "two" from "five," a Saudi military source who declined to be named told Reuters. "One" is the highest level of alert.
 
"It is a must, no one knows what will happen," he said.
 
The source said other countries in the region, including Jordan, Turkey and Israel, appeared also to have raised their level of military readiness.
 
A second source said Saudi Arabia's defense readiness had been raised last week, and meant that all leave for the armed forces would be cancelled.
 
The sources declined to give further details of what a change in alert level would mean, but analysts said it was likely some forces would be moved closer to national borders.
 
In Kuwait lawmakers have asked their government to inform them about plans for readiness to deal with repercussions of a strike on Syria, Kuwaiti newspapers reported.
 
The prime minister, Sheikh Jaber al-Mubarak al-Sabah, held an extraordinary cabinet meeting on Thursday, al-Watan reported.
 
Interior minister Sheikh Mohammad al-Hamad al-Sabah was told to take all necessary measures in case of an emergency that might arise as a result of strikes, the paper said.
 
Saudi Arabia, a major U.S. ally, Qatar and other Sunni Muslim powers back the mainly Sunni rebels battling Assad, who is from Syria's minority Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shi'ite Islam. The rebels have been joined by foreign Sunni jihadis.
 
Assad enjoys military support from Iran, Lebanon's Hezbollah and among Iraqi Shi'ites.

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
August 31, 2013 4:29 AM
It's time for Arab countries to learn how to resolve their own political problems by negotiations and reasoning. They should not rely solely on Western countries' military interventions for resolution in the Middle East. American and European credibility suffered new low when they deceitfully concocted number of phony reasons to invade Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya. That's why now Western governments are unable to convince their citizens on another military intervention in Arab country. Arabs should realise that they have a lot on their plate at the moment.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid