The rebel Free Syrian Army head has echoed fears that President Bashar Assad might resort to using chemical weapons to try to rescue his embattled regime, Al-Bayan newspaper reported on Wednesday.
"We are seeking to secure protective gas masks for civilians and (defected) soldiers ... after the regime moved some out of storage," Colonel Riad Assaad told the Dubai daily.Full Story
A suicide bomber on Wednesday struck at the heart of Syria's security apparatus, killing the country's defense minister and President Bashar Assad's brother-in-law, state television said.
The attack, which for the first time in a 16-month anti-regime uprising targeted members of Assad's inner core, came hours ahead of a U.N. Security Council debate on Syrian sanctions, when a showdown between Western powers and Russia and China is expected.Full Story
A Russian ship that tried to supply attack helicopters to Syria last month before being forced back will dock in Saint Petersburg in coming days, its owners said on Wednesday.
The privately-chartered Alaed had to return to Russia after its initial attempt to deliver the controversial cargo to President Bashar Assad's regime in June was exposed by the U.S. State Department.Full Story
Avigdor Lieberman, whose ultra-nationalist Yisrael Beitenu is a key member of Israel's ruling coalition, on Wednesday said he had no intention of leaving government a day after the Kadima party withdrew.
Despite differences with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over plans to expand the military conscription law to include more ultra-Orthodox Jews, Lieberman, who is also foreign minister, said he had no intention of quitting the coalition.Full Story
More than 60 soldiers have been killed in clashes with the rebel Free Syrian Army in Damascus in the past 48 hours, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Wednesday.
"Between 40 and 50 soldiers of the regular Syrian forces were killed the day before yesterday (Monday) in fighting in Damascus, and at least 20 were killed yesterday," the Observatory's Rami Abdel Rahman told Agence France Presse.Full Story
Two Syrian brigadier generals crossed into Turkey overnight, a Turkish foreign ministry official told Agence France Presse Wednesday.
"Some 330 Syrians including two brigadier generals fled to Turkey Tuesday night," the official said.Full Story
U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday urged the Security Council to act to stop the bloodshed in Syria, after holding talks with Chinese leaders in Beijing hours ahead of a vote on fresh sanctions.
The Security Council will on Wednesday vote on a Western resolution renewing the U.N. mission in the country that calls for sanctions if the regime does not pull back heavy weapons.Full Story
Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki vowed on Tuesday to guarantee ex-strongman Zine El Abidine Ben Ali security and a fair trial as he visited France in a bid to restore strained ties.
At a joint press conference with French President Francois Hollande, Marzouki said he could guarantee "physical security" and "a fair trial" for Ben Ali, who is in exile in Saudi Arabia after he was toppled in a popular uprising last year.Full Story
French President Francois Hollande on Tuesday pressed Russia over its stance on the conflict in Syria and described the continued bloodshed there as "unacceptable and intolerable."
The daily killings are creating "instability in the region that is detrimental to all," Hollande said at a press conference with visiting Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki.Full Story
Gunmen in south Yemen, where troops are hunting down militants linked to al-Qaida, abducted a soldier and cut off three of his fingers, the defense ministry's website said on Tuesday.
The site, 26sep.net, named the soldier as Mohammed al-Jaradi, and said he was abducted late on Monday in Daleh, the capital of the province of the same name, and taken him to a village.Full Story