Middle East
Latest stories
Tunisia Demo Protests Deadly Syria Crackdown

Dozens of people protested Wednesday outside the Syrian embassy in Tunisia, where the Arab world uprisings began, to demand an end to the "carnage" in Syria and the departure of President Bashar al-Assad.

The demonstrators also called for Tunis to expel the Syrian ambassador.

W140 Full Story
Erdogan to Assad: You Can't Speak of Reform as People are Being Killed

Turkey's ambassador to Damascus visited Syrian's flashpoint protest hub of Hama, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday, as Syrian army vehicles left the town.

"Our ambassador went to Hama and said that the tanks, security forces had started to leave Hama. This is highly important to show that our initiatives had positive results," Erdogan said in televised remarks, addressing his party members in Ankara.

W140 Full Story
Syria in Talks with International Delegates

Foreign Minister Walid Muallem told envoys from Brazil, India and South Africa on Wednesday that Syria is committed to hold talks with pro-democracy protesters and engage in reforms, official SANA news agency said.

"Syria is committed to the national dialogue and enacting the reforms announced by President Bashar al-Assad on June 20, 2011," Muallem told the delegates, SANA reported.

W140 Full Story
Syrian Army Quits Hama after 10-Day Raid

Dozens of Syrian army vehicles packed with soldiers left the flashpoint protest hub of Hama on Wednesday 10 days after storming the central city to fight "armed groups," an Agence France Presse correspondent saw.

Forty personnel carriers decked with Syrian flags rolled out of Hama with soldiers chanting slogans praising embattled President Bashar Assad, said the journalist who visited the city on a tour organized by the authorities.

W140 Full Story
Gaza Cut Off after Phone Cable Severed

An Israeli army bulldozer has damaged a communications cable and cut all phone and Internet networks in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, Palestinian officials said on Wednesday.

The blackout was caused late on Tuesday by a military bulldozer operating in Nahal Oz, close to the Palestinian enclave, Hamas telecommunications officials told AFP.

W140 Full Story
Call for Saturday Protests in Israel

Israel's social protest movement on Wednesday called for demonstrations to be held across the Jewish state on Saturday except in Tel Aviv which saw mass rallies last week.

"We decided not to stage demonstrations in Tel Aviv but to call for rallies across the country," protest leader Stav Shafir told Agence France Presse.

W140 Full Story
U.S. Launches Anti-Gadhafi Offensive in Africa

The United States has launched a diplomatic offensive against Libya among African nations as Tripoli accused NATO of a "massacre" of 85 villagers in air strikes in support of rebels.

American diplomats are visiting several African countries as part of efforts to urge leaders to press Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi to leave power immediately, officials in Washington said on Tuesday.

W140 Full Story
Kuwaiti Protestors Demand Expulsion of Syrian Ambassador

More than 2,000 Kuwaitis have rallied outside the Syrian embassy in the Gulf state demanding the expulsion of the Syrian envoy and the "freezing" of relations with Damascus.

Holding Syrian flags, the demonstrators chanted "the people want to expel the ambassador," amid a heavy police presence that prevented some protesters from approaching the embassy building.

W140 Full Story
Syrian Army Raids Idlib as Outrage Mounts

Syrian troops launched a vast operation on Wednesday in Idlib province bordering Turkey and killed at least one person, activists said, amid growing outrage over the regime's crackdown on dissent.

A defiant President Bashar al-Assad pledged to pursue a relentless battle against "terrorist groups," seemingly oblivious to the mounting international pressure to stop the use of deadly force against pro-democracy protesters.

W140 Full Story
Sources: U.S. to Tell Assad that he Must Go

The Obama administration is preparing to explicitly demand the departure of Syrian President Bashar Assad and hit his regime with tough new sanctions, U.S. officials said Tuesday as the State Department signaled for the first time that American efforts to engage the government are finally over.

The White House is expected to lay out the tougher line by the end of this week, possibly on Thursday, according to officials who said the move will be a direct response to Assad's decision to step up the ruthlessness of the crackdown against pro-reform demonstrators by sending tanks into opposition hotbeds.

W140 Full Story