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Syrian Civil War

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WORLD
March 15, 2013 | By Raja Abdulrahim
ANTAKYA, Turkey -- Large protests marking the two-year anniversary of the Syrian uprising were held across the country Friday as the opposition vowed to continue its fight to topple President Bashar Assad. As the fighting entered a third year, there were scant signs of a political solution that some world leaders have been pushing. More than 70,000 people have been killed, many of them women and children, according to the United Nations. In Damascus, the capital, government security forces spread out across many neighborhoods in an effort to prevent large demonstrations, opposition activists reported.
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WORLD
October 19, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT - Nine Lebanese hostages freed after being held by Syrian rebels for more than a year arrived to a tumultuous welcome in Beirut late Saturday, capping a complex deal that also resulted in the release of two Turkish pilots kidnapped in Lebanon and the reported freeing of scores of prisoners from Syrian jails. About an hour after the nine ex-hostages were mobbed by relatives and other well-wishers at a VIP lounge at Beirut's Rafik Hariri International Airport, images on Turkish television showed an aircraft carrying the two Turkish Airlines pilots arriving at Istanbul Ataturk Airport.
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WORLD
January 2, 2013 | By Ned Parker
BEIRUT, Lebanon --The United Nations said Wednesday that more than 60,000 people have died in Syria's bloody internal war, surpassing the Syrian opposition's estimates by one-third. The head of the United Nations Human Rights office, which released the numbers, faulted the entire international community, including the U.N., for having “fiddled around the edges while Syria burns.” Meanwhile, close to 100 people were reported killed around Damascus in air raids, including 72 people at a gas station Wednesday, according to a rebel activist spokesperson.  There was no confirmation from the Syrian government.
WORLD
October 17, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT -- A Syrian general viewed as one of the nation's top military commanders was killed in fighting in the eastern part of the country, the government and opposition activists said Thursday. The official news agency said that Maj. Gen. Jameh Jameh died while “fulfilling national duties of defending Syria” in the eastern province of Dair Alzour, long heavily contested by pro-government and rebel forces. The state media provided no other details. Jameh's killing came as Syria's deputy prime minister, Qadri Jamil, said in Moscow that plans were proceeding for peace talks known as Geneva II to be held Nov. 22-23.
WORLD
October 19, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT - Nine Lebanese hostages freed after being held by Syrian rebels for more than a year arrived to a tumultuous welcome in Beirut late Saturday, capping a complex deal that also resulted in the release of two Turkish pilots kidnapped in Lebanon and the reported freeing of scores of prisoners from Syrian jails. About an hour after the nine ex-hostages were mobbed by relatives and other well-wishers at a VIP lounge at Beirut's Rafik Hariri International Airport, images on Turkish television showed an aircraft carrying the two Turkish Airlines pilots arriving at Istanbul Ataturk Airport.
WORLD
July 17, 2013 | By Paul Richter
AMMAN, Jordan -- Secretary of State John F. Kerry, on his sixth trip to the Middle East in four months, met Wednesday with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and asked an Arab League committee in a separate session to support his efforts to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. Though U.S. officials played down prospects for a breakthrough on this four-day trip, which began Monday, Kerry appeared to be pressing hard to restart face-to-face talks. His meeting with Abbas here, which lasted five hours, was his second in two days.
WORLD
June 8, 2013 | By Alexandra Sandels and Jeffrey Fleishman, Los Angeles Times
BEIRUT - He sits on a couch in an inconspicuous building in a southern suburb of Beirut. A baseball cap pulled down low, his eyes twitching, Hassan, a Hezbollah squad leader, describes killing more than 20 men in three weeks in the Syrian town of Qusair. "It was a street war. We went from room to room, from house to house, from window to window," said Hassan, who is in his late 30s and sports a light beard. "It was guerrilla warfare with gangs, not a war with a traditional army....
WORLD
May 12, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT -- Syria on Sunday rejected Turkish charges that Damascus was behind a pair of devastating car-bomb attacks in the southern Turkish town of Reyhanli that killed 46 people and left scores injured. The strikes have stunned Turkey and exacerbated already-high tensions between the neighboring nations about the civil war raging inside Syria. Turkish officials have publicly linked the bombings to Syria's intelligence service -- a charge denied Sunday by Omran al-Zoubi, the Syrian information minister.
OPINION
September 11, 2013
Re "The road to Damascus," Editorial, Sept. 10 The Times dispassionately explains the challenges faced by the Obama administration in selling the case for action against Bashar Assad's regime in Syria. Members of the administration have been spending an immense amount of energy and media time making the case that the U.S. is compelled to act against Syria. The American people just aren't buying this, so your tone seems wishy-washy on a matter that deserves a voice. Allow me to do you the favor: The United States is not compelled and should not act in the Syrian civil war. Getting involved in the Syrian conflict is a slippery slope.
WORLD
October 17, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT -- A Syrian general viewed as one of the nation's top military commanders was killed in fighting in the eastern part of the country, the government and opposition activists said Thursday. The official news agency said that Maj. Gen. Jameh Jameh died while “fulfilling national duties of defending Syria” in the eastern province of Dair Alzour, long heavily contested by pro-government and rebel forces. The state media provided no other details. Jameh's killing came as Syria's deputy prime minister, Qadri Jamil, said in Moscow that plans were proceeding for peace talks known as Geneva II to be held Nov. 22-23.
OPINION
September 11, 2013
Re "The road to Damascus," Editorial, Sept. 10 The Times dispassionately explains the challenges faced by the Obama administration in selling the case for action against Bashar Assad's regime in Syria. Members of the administration have been spending an immense amount of energy and media time making the case that the U.S. is compelled to act against Syria. The American people just aren't buying this, so your tone seems wishy-washy on a matter that deserves a voice. Allow me to do you the favor: The United States is not compelled and should not act in the Syrian civil war. Getting involved in the Syrian conflict is a slippery slope.
WORLD
July 17, 2013 | By Paul Richter
AMMAN, Jordan -- Secretary of State John F. Kerry, on his sixth trip to the Middle East in four months, met Wednesday with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and asked an Arab League committee in a separate session to support his efforts to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. Though U.S. officials played down prospects for a breakthrough on this four-day trip, which began Monday, Kerry appeared to be pressing hard to restart face-to-face talks. His meeting with Abbas here, which lasted five hours, was his second in two days.
WORLD
July 17, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT -- The United Nations has called on nations not to turn back Syrian civil war refugees, whose swelling ranks now constitute the world's fastest-growing refugee flow in almost 20 years. “I reiterate my call to all states in the region and further afield to keep their borders open and receive all Syrians who seek protection,” U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres told the Security Council in New York on Tuesday via video link from Geneva. In recent weeks, several of Syria's neighbors, along with Egypt, have made it more difficult for Syrians to enter their countries.
WORLD
June 8, 2013 | By Alexandra Sandels and Jeffrey Fleishman, Los Angeles Times
BEIRUT - He sits on a couch in an inconspicuous building in a southern suburb of Beirut. A baseball cap pulled down low, his eyes twitching, Hassan, a Hezbollah squad leader, describes killing more than 20 men in three weeks in the Syrian town of Qusair. "It was a street war. We went from room to room, from house to house, from window to window," said Hassan, who is in his late 30s and sports a light beard. "It was guerrilla warfare with gangs, not a war with a traditional army....
WORLD
June 7, 2013 | By Alexandra Sandels
BEIRUT -- He sits on a couch in an inconspicuous building in a southern suburb of Beirut. A baseball cap pulled down low, his eyes twitching, Hassan, a Hezbollah squad leader, describes killing more than 20 men in three weeks in the Syrian town of Qusair. “It was a street war. We went from room to room, from house to house, from window to window,” said  Hassan, who is in his late 30s and sports a light beard. “It was guerrilla warfare with gangs, not a war with a traditional army .... So it needed a bit more work.
OPINION
May 30, 2013 | By Aaron David Miller
Getting into wars is easier than getting out of them. Could the same logic apply to peace conferences? Indeed, could U.S. diplomacy - however well intentioned - actually make matters worse? Secretary of State John F. Kerry has two diplomatic tracks in the works: ending a civil war in Syria and promoting a peace between Israelis and Palestinians. Both will be difficult to get started, but the real challenge will come the day after. Diplomatic conferences and events are usually good for one of two things: launching a serious process of negotiation or concluding one. What the U.S. confronts with both the Syrian civil war and the impasse in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process is a kind of twilight zone that's betwixt and between.
OPINION
May 30, 2013 | By Aaron David Miller
Getting into wars is easier than getting out of them. Could the same logic apply to peace conferences? Indeed, could U.S. diplomacy - however well intentioned - actually make matters worse? Secretary of State John F. Kerry has two diplomatic tracks in the works: ending a civil war in Syria and promoting a peace between Israelis and Palestinians. Both will be difficult to get started, but the real challenge will come the day after. Diplomatic conferences and events are usually good for one of two things: launching a serious process of negotiation or concluding one. What the U.S. confronts with both the Syrian civil war and the impasse in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process is a kind of twilight zone that's betwixt and between.
WORLD
June 7, 2013 | By Alexandra Sandels
BEIRUT -- He sits on a couch in an inconspicuous building in a southern suburb of Beirut. A baseball cap pulled down low, his eyes twitching, Hassan, a Hezbollah squad leader, describes killing more than 20 men in three weeks in the Syrian town of Qusair. “It was a street war. We went from room to room, from house to house, from window to window,” said  Hassan, who is in his late 30s and sports a light beard. “It was guerrilla warfare with gangs, not a war with a traditional army .... So it needed a bit more work.
WORLD
May 12, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT -- Syria on Sunday rejected Turkish charges that Damascus was behind a pair of devastating car-bomb attacks in the southern Turkish town of Reyhanli that killed 46 people and left scores injured. The strikes have stunned Turkey and exacerbated already-high tensions between the neighboring nations about the civil war raging inside Syria. Turkish officials have publicly linked the bombings to Syria's intelligence service -- a charge denied Sunday by Omran al-Zoubi, the Syrian information minister.
WORLD
May 11, 2013 | By Paul Richter, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - Sen. Dianne Feinstein made headlines recently by demanding a forceful U.S. response to Syria's use of chemical weapons against its population. Less noticed was that the California Democrat wasn't urging deeper military involvement or other dramatic steps, but only a new push for action by the United Nations Security Council, which has already rejected Western-backed resolutions on Syria three times. In this cautious approach, Feinstein, who is chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, is not alone.
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