Home > Uncategorized > Updates on Libyan war and Syria: April 29

Updates on Libyan war and Syria: April 29

====

NATO Warplanes Target Tripoli As Air Missions Reach 4,242

NATO To Establish Post In Eastern Libya

NATO Mission To Benghazi Prelude To Ground Operations: Expert

130 Missions: Danish Warplanes Bomb Libyan Ammunition Depot

“Human Rights Overriding Sovereignty”: Threat Of World Disorder

Germany Pushes EU Regime Change Package For Syria

Chinese Envoy Rules Out Threat Of External Force In Syria

Russian Interview On Western Media Lies About Syria

====

NATO Warplanes Target Tripoli As Air Missions Reach 4,242

http://www.nato.int/nato_static/assets/pdf/pdf_2011_04/20110429_110429-oup-update.pdf

North Atlantic Treaty Organization
April 29, 2011

NATO and Libya
JFC Naples, SHAPE, NATO HQ

….

Air Operations

Since the beginning of the NATO operation (31 March 2011, 08.00GMT) a total of 4242 sorties, including 1766 strike sorties have been conducted.

Sorties conducted 28 April: 142

Strike sorties conducted 28 April: 67
….
Key Targets and Engagements

28 April: In the vicinity of Tripoli: 1 command and control building. 1 helicopter maintenance area, 7 ammunition storage bunkers, 5 infantry fighting vehicles.

In the vicinity of Zintan: 1 ammunition storage facility.

In the vicinity of Brega: 1 command and control building.
….
Arms Embargo Activities

A total of 19 ships under NATO command are actively patrolling the Central Mediterranean.

24 Vessels were hailed on 28 April to determine destination and cargo. 1 boarding (no diversion) was conducted.

A total of 706 vessels have been hailed, 21 boardings and 5 diversions have been conducted since the beginning of arms embargo operations.
….

====

NATO To Establish Post In Eastern Libya

http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20110427/world/nato-to-establish-civilian-post-in-libya.362472

Times of Malta
April 27, 2011

NATO to establish civilian post in Libya

NATO allies have agreed to establish a civilian post in Libya’s eastern rebel bastion of Benghazi in an effort to step up political contacts with the opposition, an alliance source said today.

Ambassadors of the 28-nation alliance backed late Tuesday the “general principle” of having a “contact point” in the country, and the details of the post will be worked out in the coming days or weeks, the source said.

The alliance representative will likely be a diplomat from a NATO country that already has a representative in Benghazi, the souce added.

NATO spokeswoman Carmen Romero said Tuesday that the goal was to “improve and enhance these political contacts with the (opposition’s) interim national council.”

France and Italy are the only NATO countries to have officially recognised the opposition Transitional National Council. Qatar, which is contributing to NATO’s operations in Libya, has also recognised the TNC.

France, Italy and Britain announced last week that they were sending military advisers to assist Libya’s rebel shadow government in Benghazi.

====

NATO Mission To Benghazi Prelude To Ground Operations: Expert

http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/04/29/49652127.html

Voice of Russia
April 29, 2011

Does NATO have a clear goal in Libya?

Permanent members of the North Atlantic Council have approved the initiative of NATO Chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen to name a point of contact in Libya’s rebel-held city of Benghazi to improve political links with the rebel leadership there. The contact point was likely to be a diplomat from a NATO state which already has representation in Benghazi. Many experts see this as the alliance making its final decision on joining the anti-Gaddafi forces.

Citing a source in NATO headquarters, The Financial Times Deutschland says that a new NATO representative will be responsible for developing initial contacts between the alliance and the rebels’ Benghazi-based interim national council. The paper notes that until recently Brussels had been trying to maintain neutral position in the Libyan conflict, though it did not prevent the coalition forces from bombing Gaddafi`s residence. But now the alliance has openly taken the side of the insurgents.

Viktor Litovkin, executive editor-in-chief of ‘Independent Military Observer’ newspaper is certain about NATO`s true reason for naming a point contact in Benghazi:

“I see it as a step towards ground operation, no matter who will lead it. All these aides and experts are expected not just to teach the insurgents to fight Gaddafi but also explore Libyan territories to know where to dispatch troops and place weaponry.”

France, Italy and Turkey have already announced that they are ready to send their diplomats to Libya. However, not all NATO members are said to have approved Rasmussen`s proposal since it takes the western coalition even further from the UNSC resolution on a no-fly zone above Libya and protection of peaceful civilians there. More and more experts agree that the alliance still does not have a clear goal on Libya.

A prominent Russian political analyst Fiodor Lukyanov described the NATO-led campaign in Libya ‘a war without a goal’. He notes that there is a kind of mystery about NATO`s true position on the Libyan crisis. Besides, very little is known about the number and military might of the insurgents.

====

130 Missions: Danish Warplanes Bomb Libyan Ammunition Depot

http://en.trend.az/regions/met/arabicr/1867941.html

Trend News Agency
April 28, 2011

Danish F-16 jets bomb Libyan ammunition dumps

Danish F-16 fighters attacked ammunition dumps in Libya while an accident at the fighters’ forward operating base in Sigonella, Sicily of Italy, led to them being diverted to Trapani, also in Sicily, said Denmark’s Air Force on Wednesday.

In a statement, the Air Force said Danish F-16s have carried out three missions in areas south of the Libyan capital Tripoli, and south of its third-largest city, Misrata, in the past 24 hours, with eight precision-guided bombs being dropped against ammunition dumps, Xinhua reported.

Six Danish F-16 fighter jets are currently deployed as part of the NATO-led intervention against Libya, and are operating out of Sigonella Air Force Base in Sicily.

The statement added that Danish F-16s returning from missions over Libya are being directed to land at Trapani, Italy, after a United Arab Emirates (UAE) fighter jet suffered an accident on the runway at Sigonella.

The UAE F-16 veered off the runway Wednesday, but no casualties were reported. The runway remains closed.

In all, Danish aircraft have carried out 130 missions since deployment to the Libya mission in mid-March.

====

“Human Rights Overriding Sovereignty”: Threat Of World Disorder

http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/90001/90780/91345/7366136.html

People’s Daily
April 29, 2011

‘Human rights overriding sovereignty’ only a mask of hegemony
By Wang Hanlu

Some Western countries recently have been claiming the “human rights overriding sovereignty” [principle] in high-sounding [language].

However, it is only a public mask for some western clowns to hide their true faces of hegemonism and a public excuse for them to pursue their own national interests and carry out their values behind [the process].

Apparently, they are holding up the moral flag for safeguarding the human rights of all people on this planet, but in doing that they violate other countries’ sovereignty optionally, interfere un their internal affairs, overthrow governments in other countries, attack with military forces and even operate “Decapitation Action” toward other countries’ leaders.

Covering the mask, they act like “preachers of human rights,” and issue the so-called Country Reports on Human Rights to criticize the “terrible” situations regarding human rights in more than 190 countries, excluding themselves.

Using the excuse, they disrespect other countries’ laws when talking of human rights, and turn mutual dialogue into unilateral pressure.

Under the circumstances, “human rights overriding sovereignty” has already become the most powerful weapon of some Western countries.

However, nothing hints at the “human rights overriding sovereignty” being legal in the UN Charter, but the saying does violate the UN Charter.

The Charter regulates clearly that “Nothing contained in the present Charter shall authorize the United Nations to intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state. (Chapter I)”

“No State or group of States has the right to intervene directly or indirectly, for any reason whatever, in the internal or external affairs of any other State.”

“No State may use or encourage the use of economic, political or any other type of measures to coerce another State in order to obtain from it the subordination of the exercise of its sovereign rights and to secure from it advantages of any kind.”

Regulated in “The Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and Cooperation among States in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations” issued on Oct. 24 of 1970 by the United Nations.

After listing 28 items of human rights, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights written in the U.N. in 1948 says “These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.”

The principle of a country’s sovereignty is a basic right the basic supported by the purposes and principles of the United Nations. If that basis is waved, the world is going to be in disorder.

When coming down to its own sovereignty, America, the country that is claiming the “human rights overriding sovereignty” right all the time, will never make any compromise.

As of now, United States still refuses to sign the Ottawa Treaty, which aims at stopping the effects of anti-personnel landmines (AP mines) around the world, as well as the Kyoto Protocol, which aims at controlling global warming, because such treaties will absolutely affect its sovereignty and national interests.

“Human rights overriding sovereignty” stands for messing up the whole world. When the Western coalition intervening in Libyan civil affairs under the name of humanitarian [intervention] uses military force to target places, including TV stations and the accommodation of Qaddafi, the Libyan leader, which has nothing to do with protecting civilian and human rights. Obviously, it is intended to effect a “Decapitation Action” for Qaddafi.

Further, the most horrible aspect about the saying is it’s borderless. What else cannot be done, even to kill a country’s leader can be done under the excuse of it?

====

Germany Pushes EU Regime Change Package For Syria

http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,,15038596,00.html

Deutsche Welle
April 29, 2011

Germany pushes for tough sanctions against Syria

Ahead of a series of international meetings, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle has called for broad sanctions against Syria for its brutal crackdown on anti-government protesters.

Speaking on German television Friday morning, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle urged the international community to implement tough sanctions against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for his violent crackdown on anti-government demonstrations.

“We strongly condemn in all severity the violence against one’s own people,” Westerwelle told the ARD morning news program, Morgenmagazin.

European Union ambassadors in Brussels are slated to discuss a joint EU reaction to the escalating violence against peaceful demonstrators in Syria at a meeting Friday afternoon.

A push by the EU to condemn Syria in a United Nations resolution failed in the Security Council on Thursday.

Clear response needed

Westerwelle stressed that it was important that the international community now speak with one voice.

“We Europeans will be implementing sanctions,” he said.

The chairman of the foreign affairs committee in the German parliament, Ruprecht Polenz, also called for “targeted sanctions” and a “clear response” to Assad.

“I am for clearly showing Syria that what they are doing in unacceptable,” he said.

Polenz raised the prospect of sanctions aimed at travel restrictions for members of the Syrian regime, the freezing of assets, a weapons embargo and political isolation.

….

Author: Gregg Benzow (dpa, AFP, AP, Reuters)
Editor: Sean Sinico

====

Chinese Envoy Rules Out Threat Of External Force In Syria

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/china/2011-04/29/c_13852195.htm

Xinhua News Agency
April 29, 2011

Use of force not solution to Syrian crisis: Chinese envoy

GENEVA: The use or threat of force should be ruled out in dealing with the Syrian crisis, Chinese Ambassador He Yafei said at a special session of UN Human Rights Council on Syria Friday.

The use or threat of force “cannot not bring a solution to the problem and will only cause a greater humanitarian crisis,” He said.

Addressing the Human Rights Council, he said China welcomed the moves taken by the Syrian government, such as the lifting of the state of emergency and beginning of political reforms, as well as a call for national dialogue and decision to investigate all the recent events.

The Chinese envoy also expressed his concern over the ongoing turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa. The unrest, he said, has not only affected those countries’ stability and disrupted their economic and social development as well as people’s normal life, but also undermined the regional security.

Apart from the principle of non-use of force, China also insists that the solution to the Syrian crisis should be in accordance with the UN Charter and international law while respecting the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the countries concerned, and refraining from interfering in their internal affairs.

“Any help from the international community has to be of a constructive nature, which is conducive to the restoration of stability and public order and ensuring the maintenance of normal economic and social life,” He said.

====

Russian Interview On Western Media Lies About Syria

http://rt.com/news/syria-lies-interview/

RT
April 29, 2011

Western media lie about Syria – eyewitness reports
­Nadezhda Kevorkova

-It was quite a shock to see Al-Jazeera presenting rallies in support of the president as if they were protests against him. It was just as surprising to see the Israeli websites post photos and videos of supporters’ rallies with comments saying those were opponents of the regime. There you have people holding portraits of Bashar al-Assad and flags, and we’re told that these people are against him.
-Reuters broadcast their material around the world, including Russia. One source lies, and then this lie is like a snowball rolling downhill creating a fake reality, and picking up rumor and speculation.
-People in Syria watch the footage. What do they see? A picture allegedly from Yemen. A picture allegedly from Egypt. A picture allegedly from Syria. But the pictures all show people dressed in the same fashion. People in Syria can tell their fellow countrymen from their neighbors – both by their faces and their clothes.
-I repeat, policemen are unarmed. The Syrian police are not too good with guns, because nothing like this has happened here for a long time. But the killed rookies are reported as either victims among the protestors, or as policemen who refused to shoot at their fellow countrymen, depending on the editors’ preference. Goebbels’ words seem to be true: the bigger the lie, the more easily they believe it.
-Rumor has it that trained commandos came across the border from Iraq. People in Syria are well-aware that after the US occupied Iraq, they formed special squads there. They were killing people, stirring up conflicts between the Shiite and Sunni communities, and between Muslims and Christians; they were blowing up streets, markets, mosques and churches….Such militants were detained in Deraa and Latakia. They had US-made weapons.

While media reports paint a picture of the situation in Syria as a mass public uprising brutally suppressed by the dictatorial government, the events are viewed in a totally different way by those living there.

­RT caught up with Ankhar Kochneva, director of a Moscow-based tourist firm specializing in the Middle East. She often travels to Syria, and stays in touch with hundreds of people in the region. She shared what her contacts say about the unfolding unrest and who they blame for the spreading violence.

RT: What’s happening in Syria? What have you seen? And that are the Syrians saying?

Ankhar Kochneva: Not even once did I come across anyone who would in any way support these riots; and mind you, in the line of my job, I deal with all sorts of people. There are many vehicles with the president’s portraits driving the streets throughout the country – ranging from old, barely moving crankers to brand new Porsches and Hummers. You can’t force people into hanging up portraits. It means that people, irrespective of their status and income, support the president rather than the rebellion. I saw quite a number of young people walking or driving around with Syrian flags. How can you force a young person hanging out with friends to wave flags? I think it’s difficult too. If you understand the mentality of the Syrians you can tell there is a sincere impulse rather than a forced obligation.

On March 29, I saw a rally in Hama to support the president – indeed, many thousands of men and women, with their children, and entire families went out. The streets were flooded with people. It was quite a shock to see Al-Jazeera presenting rallies in support of the president as if they were protests against him. It was just as surprising to see the Israeli websites post photos and videos of supporters’ rallies with comments saying those were opponents of the regime. There you have people holding portraits of Bashar al-Assad and flags, and we’re told that these people are against him.

RT: The media reports mass anti-government rallies.

A.K.: There’s a powerful misinformation swell going on. On April 1, the media reported a large anti-governmental rally in Damascus. I was in Damascus on that day. This rally never happened – I didn’t see it, and neither did the locals.

On April 16, Reuters news agency wrote that 50,000 opponents of the regime took to the streets of Damascus, and that they had been dispersed with tear gas and batons. Damascus’ residents realize that such a rally could not take place in the city unnoticed. How many policemen would it take to disperse it? And how come nobody saw it except Reuters? Five hundred people in the streets of Damascus are a large crowd. Reuters broadcast their material around the world, including Russia. One source lies, and then this lie is like a snowball rolling downhill creating a fake reality, and picking up rumor and speculation.

People in Syria watch the footage. What do they see? A picture allegedly from Yemen. A picture allegedly from Egypt. A picture allegedly from Syria. But the pictures all show people dressed in the same fashion. People in Syria can tell their fellow countrymen from their neighbors – both by their faces and their clothes.

There are videos on the internet showing how amateur footage of the so-called riots is made. There’s a parked car and nothing’s going on around. And there’s a man standing next to it throwing rocks. And people around are taking pictures.

There are a lot of staged videos. A Lebanese can tell the difference between footage taken in Lebanon and that taken in Damascus at a glance. And they show footage from Tripoli, or footage taken several years ago in Iraq, and say it is unrest in Syria.

There are many online forums for women in Arab countries. Women share information following TV reports on ‘mass unrests’. Women write – what’s happening outside your window? And they reply: we looked down from the balcony, and didn’t see anything that the TV was talking about.

Presently, a lot of young unarmed policemen get killed. The media propaganda immediately labels them as victims of the regime. I repeat, policemen are unarmed. The Syrian police are not too good with guns, because nothing like this has happened here for a long time. But the killed rookies are reported as either victims among the protestors, or as policemen who refused to shoot at their fellow countrymen, depending on the editors’ preference. Goebbels’ words seem to be true: the bigger the lie, the more easily they believe it.

RT: But why are policemen dying if there are no mass protests?

A.K.: Policemen die because they get shot by those who know that they are unarmed.

RT: Who shoots policemen?

A.K.: They talk a lot about it in Syria. Rumor has it that trained commandos came across the border from Iraq. People in Syria are well-aware that after the US occupied Iraq, they formed special squads there. They were killing people, stirring up conflicts between the Shiite and Sunni communities, and between Muslims and Christians; they were blowing up streets, markets, mosques and churches. Those terrorist attacks targeted civilians rather than the occupying regime.

Not long ago, they caught three such commandos in the outskirts of Damascus, when they were randomly shooting at people. They turned out to be Iraqis.

Syrian TV showed footage of somebody shooting at policemen and passers-by from bushes and rooftops. They occasionally get caught, and they either turn out to be Iraqis, or they admit that they were paid for it. Such militants were detained in Deraa and Latakia. They had US-made weapons.

The Lebanese security service intercepted several cars carrying weapons as they were coming into Lebanon. One such car was stopped coming from Iraq. There were American weapons in those cars too. Also there are reports about detained people who had large sums of money with them – with US dollars. These people carried expensive satellite phones that cannot be tapped by the Syrian security service.

In Syria, it is no longer a secret to anyone that the Americans have an unhindered opportunity to recruit and train the commandos in Iraq, and then send them wherever they want.

Hilary Clinton has already stated that if Syria cuts its relations with Iran and withdraws its support for Hamas and Hezbollah, the demonstrations would stop the next day. They don’t even bother to keep secret the hand instilling riots in Syria.

There’s plenty of evidence of foreign interference.

Finally, people say protestors are brought in from afar for the rallies. Those people speak and look differently from the locals. Nobody in the neighborhood knows them. Who rents the buses and finances the delivery of these people? The question stands.

The former Syrian Vice-President Abdel Halim Khaddam had initiated the riots in the coastal regions. He had plundered half of the country. He was involved in corruption schemes and finally fled to the West. It was he who tried to accuse Syrian President Bashar al-Assad of assassinating the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. The Syrians firmly believe that Sayed Hariri had personally given a villa to Abdel Halim Khaddam for spreading this version of Rafik Hariri’s murder. But when that version fell apart and was not confirmed, the villa was taken away. Today, those who shot at cars in Banias are shouting: “We don’t want Bashar. We want Abdel Halim!”

There are peaceful and cultured opposition members in Banias who have been against al-Assad’s regime for many years. But they are shocked by what’s going on and do not support Khaddam at all. They say: “He’s a thief. He who stole most calls to fight corruption and thievery.”

RT: What role are Syrian emigrants playing in the Syrian destabilization?

A.K.: It’s an open question. There was a leak claiming that Dan Feldman, Hillary Clinton’s special representative for the Middle East, met representatives of the Syrian opposition in Istanbul in mid-April and suggested the tactics for assassinations of civil and military officials. In less than three days, on April 19, several military officials had been brutally killed in Syria. Not only were they attacked and shot dead, some victims of the attacks, including three teenage children of a Syrian general, who were in a car with him, were cut to pieces with sabres.

Murders committed with a high degree of brutality are aimed at intimidating the population. The news that children had been cut to pieces served that purpose quite well.

RT: Media reports used to say that the riots started after the arrest in the city of Deraa, in southern Syria, of several children writing anti-government slogans? Is it really so?

A.K.: All the children had been released very quickly. Moreover, the government-owned Syrian newspapers published the release orders.

RT: Have troops been brought into Deraa?

A.K.: Yes, troops are there. After an Islamic emirate had been proclaimed in Deraa, the local residents asked the government for help. Troops have been brought in. I’ve just seen the videos. The demonstrators published them on the internet and shortly after erased them. But people made copies. There are soldiers, and people come to them and talk peacefully. Nobody shoots anyone.

RT: Is there a sentiment in Syria that if it gets rid of Hamas support and the Palestinians and strike a peace deal with Israel, all the riots will end immediately?

A.K.: No, there’s no such sentiment. There’s consolidation of society. The people are sticking together because they see that the enemy is extremely dangerous. For instance, previously I never heard anything except pop music and the recital of the Koran on the radio when I rode in a taxi. Now, patriotic music is coming from all cars. When Bashar al-Assad was speaking on television, the people who were listening to him at the market applauded him. You cannot force people to applaud a president who speaks on television.

RT: What has the public mood been in recent days?

A.K.: People are afraid of going out. In some regions, people risked their lives to record with a secret camera how unidentified persons sneaked into a car, moved off and started shooting in all directions. This is how they are sowing panic in residential areas.

Bandits blocked a bridge on the road near the coast. Soon, the military pushed them back. One of my Syrian contacts told me: “you don’t need many people to plunge the country into trouble.”

Putting five people on a major road would be enough to paralyze the whole area. People are unable to deliver foodstuffs or reach hospitals. And the whole country is in shock because of a handful of bandits.

Now, Syrian television is making live broadcasts from various parts of Damascus and other cities for people to see how the situation is unfolding and how life is getting back to normal, whatever the Western media show.

It’s noteworthy that bandits intentionally tried to rouse hatred among various communities. Recently, a sheikh was insulting the Druze, particularly women, in an address to the residents of the south. This video is being broadcast by the foreign media and is advertized on the internet. Nothing like that ever happened in Syria before. Provocations failed in Damascus though attempts were made to set religious communities against each other. Provocateurs lack support in rural areas too – the sowing campaign has started there.

The most massive demonstrations in Dera gathered 500 people. But they say 450 people have been killed.

RT: Has the government launched any reforms?

A.K.: The government has lifted martial law and has allowed the staging of authorized rallies if permission for them is obtained five days ahead. Foreigners have been allowed to buy real estate. The Kurds have been granted citizenship. The Kurdish population didn’t have it before for a number of historical reasons. The government is opening business courses for women in northern Syria. Many provincial governors have been dismissed. Unfortunately, in some cases they were honest people. Like those who refused to free criminals from prison for bribes and had been targeted by smear campaigns in public for it.

RT: Have the number of flights to Syria been cut?

A.K.: There are no tickets for Syria. We wanted to dispatch a group of tourists to Syria but there were no air tickets to Damascus for April 30. But Russians are not fleeing from Syria. I have full information about it for my job.

====

Advertisements
Categories: Uncategorized
  1. No comments yet.
  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: