Syria conflict

Syria cluster bomb attack 'kills 10 children'

An unverified video posted by Syrian opposition activists claims to show cluster bombs used in the Deir al-Asafir attack. Photo: SCMP Pictures

A Syrian government air strike on a rebel-held village near Damascus killed 10 children on Sunday as they played outdoors, opposition activists said, and video footage showed residents collecting young bodies torn by shrapnel.


Monday, 26 November, 2012, 5:24pm

Russia warns Turkey against deploying Patriot missiles

German Defence Minister Thomas de Maiziere speaks to the media in Berlin about the deployment of German Patriot anti-aircraft missiles to Turkey. Photo: EPA

Russia on Thursday warned Turkey against deploying Patriot missiles to protect its troubled border with Syria, saying it should instead help broker peace.

22 Nov 2012 - 7:18pm

Britain recognises new Syrian opposition group

William Hague (left) with newly-formed opposition bloc leader Ahmed Moaz al-Khatib, just before a Whitehall meeting on November 16. Photo: AP

Britain formally recognised a newly-formed opposition bloc as the sole representative of the Syrian people yesterday, as the chief of the UN said he feared Syria could become a "regional battleground".

21 Nov 2012 - 6:37am

Syria opposition plans Egypt HQ

Head of the National Coalition of Forces of the Syrian Revolution and Opposition, Ahmad Mouaz al-Khatib (left), meets with Egyptian Foreign Minister, Mohammed Kamel Amr, in Cairo, Egypt, on Monday. Photo: EPA

A newly formed Syrian opposition bloc that has received Arab and international backing is to be based in Egypt, its head Ahmed Moaz al-Khatib told the official MENA news agency on Monday.

“It has been decided that the Syrian National Coalition will have its headquarters in Egypt,” Khatib was quoted as saying after talks with Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr.

19 Nov 2012 - 9:37pm

Briefs, November 17, 2012

Milan’s cash-strapped cathedral, the Duomo. Photo: AFP

Two dead in oil rig fire in Gulf of Mexico

17 Nov 2012 - 2:22am

North Korea accused of smuggling arms to Syria

The Shanghai-owned vessel Xin Yan Tai. Photo: SCMP Pictures

North Korea is suspected of having tried to send missile components to Syria in violation of UN sanctions, but the shipment was intercepted by South Korean authorities, diplomats say.

South Korean officials seized 445 graphite cylinders, which had been declared as lead piping, from a Chinese vessel, the Xin Yan Tai, UN Security Council diplomats said. The incident occurred in May.

15 Nov 2012 - 2:40am

Foreign-owned bar a hit with Damascus clubbers

Damascenes dance at a club in the capital, a welcome respite from the turmoil of the civil war. Photo: AFP

Jean-Luc Duthion admits it was risky opening a bar in the heart of Damascus almost a year into Syria's civil war, but his venue has become a hit among locals seeking relief from the bloodshed.

15 Nov 2012 - 2:57am

France first European country to recognise new Syrian opposition

France has become the first European country to recognise the newly formed Syrian rebel coalition, and raised the possibility of arming the group as it begins taking charge of the opposition's role in the civil war.

15 Nov 2012 - 2:57am

Syria kidnap suspect arrested in Britain

British police have arrested a man at London's Heathrow Airport in connection with the kidnapping of two Western journalists by Islamic extremists in Syria.

London's Metropolitan Police said they arrested the 24-year-old man on Monday on suspicion of terrorism offences after he arrived on a flight from Bahrain.

14 Nov 2012 - 3:52am

Syrians forced to sell heirlooms just to survive

A woman examines gold rings in Damascus. Photo: SCMP Pictures

In a Damascus jewellery shop, the customer's jaw drops when he hears what he is being offered for his gold ring. Barely US$100. "Can't you do any better?" he asks timidly before accepting the deal.

After nearly 20 long months of conflict, many Syrians are now digging deep into their pockets, with many having to sell their jewellery - including family heirlooms - just to survive.

13 Nov 2012 - 3:01am

US backs united front to topple Assad regime

The United States has declared its support for the united Syrian opposition after various groups opposed to the government of President Bashar al-Assad decided to come together following talks in Doha, Qatar.

13 Nov 2012 - 2:56am

Syria opposition unites, elects cleric as new leader

Muslim cleric Ahmed al-Khatib has been elected to lead the National Coalition of Forces of the the Syrian Revolution and Opposition. Photo: AFP

Syrian opposition factions which agreed on Sunday in Qatar to form a new coalition to fight President Bashar al-Assad have elected cleric Ahmed Moaz al-Khatib to head the bloc, dissidents said.

12 Nov 2012 - 4:30am

Israel fires warning shots into Syrian areas in response to stray shell

Israeli soldiers stand guard in Alonei Habashan in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. Photo: AFP

Israeli forces fired into Syria yesterday in what the military called a warning, after stray munitions from fighting between Syrian troops and rebels hit the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

12 Nov 2012 - 4:19am

Briefs, November 10, 2012

Prince Charles greets the crowd at Bondi Beach. Photo: EPA

Thousands of Syrians flee border town

10 Nov 2012 - 3:00am

China signals more active role in world affairs

Chinese policemen stand guard near a screen showing a live broadcasting of Chinese President Hu Jintao's remarks at the opening session of the 18th Communist Party Congress, in Beijing, on Thursday. Photo: AP

China’s four-point plan for Syria is a rare foray into international mediation for the rising power, a sign that Beijing’s increasingly global economic interests can trump its traditional hands-off diplomacy.

9 Nov 2012 - 5:41pm