Syria Update September 13, 2012

Syria Update September 13, 2012. (Institute of Middle Eastern, Islamic and Strategic Studies. By Sherifa Zuhur)

Current death toll: 130 including 83 unarmed civilians.

Syria’s children are suffering from the conflict, and like children in conflict elsewhere in the world, their play reenacts the violence. Children do not have sufficient medicine to be treated. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08-PBLcZ8zo&feature=plcp

Aleppo province: The FSA distributed aid in the Tariq al-Bab area of Aleppo. The Syrian military shelled Tariq al-Bab today killing 15. The al-Sukkari neighborhood was shelled tonight, causing injuries and destroying homes. Clashes occurred in the Itha’a area. A violent explosion was reported at a Syrian army base in Halab al-Jadida. A sniper killed a man in the Salhin neighborhood. Three Syrian military troops were killed in clashes in the Sayf al-Dawla area of Aleppo. A sniper killed one civilian in Jabriyya. The Syrian military shelled Be’idin, and al-Me’adi. Clashes took place in the Sa`d Allah al-Jabiri Square. There were clashes in al-Midan and reports that the opposition had taken over a police department but the regime shelled the area via warplanes and recovered the police department.

Heavy clashes took place near the Aleppo international airport. The Syrian military employed helicopter gunships there.

The Syrian military shelled the towns of Tel Rifa`at, Deir Hafir and Ritan in Aleppo province. The Syrian military also shelled Khan al-Asal and Ra`el.

Dara`a province: The Syrian military detained a civilian from the village of al-Shajara and tortured him to death. A man from Nowa was badly tortured and then killed after being detained for 10 days. The Syrian military was heavily shelling al-Yaduda.

Damascus province: Clashes between the opposition and the Syrian military took place in Qazaz. Clashes took place in the Barmakeh area of Damascus; gunfire was heard in Muhajireen (but it may have been the clashes in Baramkeh). The body of one civilian was found near Yarmouk camp. Clashes occurred in the neighborhood of Daf al-Shawk involving rockets and machine guns. The Syrian military raided homes in al-Hjeira, carrying off residents and then burning their homes. Seven people were killed in the Hjeira area near Sayyida Zeinab and 10 others there were badly wounded.

Heavy clashes occurred in the city of Harasta. Among 25 civilians found in the town of Yalda who had been summarily executed were 15 Palestinians. The Syrian military shelled the towns of Douma, Hamouriyya and Yabrud, killing one civilian in Douma. The corpse of a man from Hamouriyya was found in Mu’adamiyya who had been summarily executed. Regime forces who moved into the neighborhood of Mazra`a in Harasta killed 4 men.

Deir az-Zur province: The Syrian military shelled the Ba’ajin neighborhood of the city of Deir az-Zur killing one civilian. The Syrian military also bombarded the neighborhoods of al-Erfi, al-Jbeila, al-Hamidiyya and al-Shaykh Yassin.

Hama province: The Syrian military carried out raids in the neighborhoods of Sabouniyya and Qusur in Hama, detaining residents.

The Syrian military shelled the towns of Sahl al-Ghab and Jabal Shehshbo.

Homs province: The Syrian military resumed shelling the village of al-Berj today. Earlier today, the Syrian military was bombarding al-Hula causing people to flee.

Idlib province: The Syrian military bombarded the towns of al-Bara al-Ghadfa, Hafsarjeh, Jerjenez, Kafarbatikh, Kafartharim, Meshmeshan, Salqin, and Saraqeb. Two opposition fighters were killed in clashs in Saraqeb.

The Syrian military shelled Maskana and Deir Hafir. Four persons were killed overnight (last night) in the province

Latakia province: Two IEDs exploded in the city of Latakia: one in the Qneines neighborhood and the other in the al-Amud neighborhood. Both targeted Syrian security vehicles.

The Syrian military bombarded an opposition base in the village of Marj al-Zawiya killing 5 opposition fighters and a civilian.

Today’s news from Syrian state television (in English). As in every Syrian government-controlled news report, the newscaster refers to the opposition solely as “terrorists” and is condemnatory of the states in the United Nations who are critical of Syria. I am not posting this to recommend it, nor to agree with the veracity of this reporting, but merely to give you a taste of what Syrians hear every day. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgObttnVaiY

Kidnapees/Hostages Abu Ibrahim, a Syrian opposition commander who is holding ten Shi`i hostages said in an interview today near Bab al-Salameh that he is ready to release them, but fears that doing so will set reprisals underway. When he kidnapped these reported members of Hizbullah, he thought it would cause Hizbullah to reconsider its support of Bashar al-Assad, but instead it unleashed a wave of kidnappings of Syrians and others in Lebanon. http://www.boston.com/news/world/middle-east/2012/09/13/syria-rebel-sunni-jihadists-after-shiite-hostages/8J1xVpgCumyZBTWChwicnI/story.html

International:

Pope Benedict XVI is visiting Lebanon. Some Syrian Christians are hoping for an encouraging word from the Pope for peace in Syria (although most have their own religious leadership).

Lakhdar Brahimi, the U.N.-Arab League Special Envoy to Syria arrived in Damascus where he was supposed to meet Bashar al-Assad today. The meeting was rescheduled for Friday, September 14.

The French defense minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, speaking in Beirut, said that France will not provide weapons to the Syrian opposition.

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