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Entries in Walid al-Moallem (10)


Syria Today: The Civilians Trapped in Qusayr

A spokesman for insurgents tours the besieged city of Qusayr

Claimed Footage of Scud Strike in Kafar Hamra Section of Aleppo

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Iran Live Coverage: The Oil Squeeze Renewed

See also Iran Video Feature: 50 Iranians Answer, "What's Your Wish?"
Iran Feature: The Fear in the Corridors of Evin Prison
Friday's Iran Live Coverage: "Widespread and Systematic Violations of Human Rights"

1758 GMT: The Battle Within. Prominent MP Ahmad Tavakoli --- who is also a relative of Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani and head of judiciary Sadegh Larijani --- has criticised both President Ahmadinejad and Mir Hossein Mousavi, the candidate in the 2009 Presidential election who has been under strict house arrest for more than two years, for "social mobilisation against the Supreme Leader".

1708 GMT: Oil Watch. Another problem for Iran's sagging oil exports, as Mercator Lines has stopped offering a ship for transporting Iranian oil to India because of US political pressure.

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Syria Live Coverage: Insurgents Capture Symbolic "Nuclear" Site

2319 GMT: More Fighting in Damascus. It's late, past 1 AM in in Syria, but there are still fresh reports of explosions and gunfire there tonight. This video was reportedly taken in Baramkeh, in west-central Damascus, not far from Tishreen and the heart of the Assad regime (map):

2303 GMT: Surface-to-Surface Missiles. Tonight there are reports that more "Scuds" have launched from the regime's 155th Brigade base in Quteifeh, northeast of Damascus (map). Last week, when there were similar reports, dozens died in Aleppo province when several missiles hit residential areas, crumbling buildings and trapping residents. Those rockets fell on areas just north of Aleppo's airport, an airport that was reportedly being overrun by rebels. Today the airport was once again under attack. No word yet what was targeted by these latest strikes, however.

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Syria Live Coverage: A "Humanitarian Tragedy"

2120 GMT: Jet Shot Down in Damascus? All day we've been tracking reports of a jet shot down in Damascus. The only problem is that it's unclear a jet ever crashed. However, a reader, Amir, finds this video. Much of it is a collection of videos from today that we have seen. The clip we had not seen is at about the 2:30 mark, when an explosion on the horizon, followed my a smoke cloud, reportedly shows the moment the jet crashed.

We're still not 100% sure what happened, though there are plenty of rumors that the pilot, a Russian, has been captured. We'd treat this as straight rumor until a video is released.

2105 GMT: Battle for Ashrafiyeh District of Aleppo. The rebels have set their sights on another district in norther-central in Aleppo, the Ashrafiyeh District. A microblogger finds several videos, including the one below which appear to show rebels firing mortars at Assad positions from the nearby railway (map):

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Syria Live Coverage: "Darayya is Being Pounded to Dust"

Al Jazeera's Sue Turton on Syrians decimating forests to survive the winter

See also Algeria (and Beyond) Coverage: Gas Plant Siege Ends with 23 Hostages, 32 Attackers Killed
Saturday's Syria Live Coverage: UN Human Rights Chief Calls for War Crimes Investigation

2029 GMT: A Town After the Bombardment. Al Jazeera English's Basma Atassi reports:

The centre of Salqin in northern Syria looked deceptively normal, just a day after the town came under lethal government air strikes.

Shops were open for business. Residents strolled through the main square. Children could be seen playing in the narrow streets.

Yet a closer look at the streets of Salqin revealed the brutal scars of war. Away from the square, sidewalks were stained with blood and littered with broken glass.

Residents said six people were killed when government forces attacked the rebel-held town bordering Turkey on Friday. Dozens of people were injured, locals said, including many children.

Three siblings --- Basel, 12, Doriyeh, 10, and Raghad, 8 --- were injured by shrapnel as a rocket detonated near their home while they played.

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Syria Live Coverage: UN Human Rights Chief Calls for War Crimes Investigation

Claimed footage of a regime tank firing in the Damascus suburb of Darayya

See also Algeria (and Beyond) Coverage: Hostage Situation Continues at Gas Plant
Friday's Syria Live Coverage: Another Mass Killing, Another Dispute of Responsibility

2146 GMT: Regime Calls on Insurgents to Stop Fighting. Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem has called on insurgents to lay down their weapons and take part in a national dialogue, saying everyone who participates will be included in a new Cabinet with wide executive powers.

"I tell the young men who carried arms to change and reform, take part in the dialogue for a new Syria and you will be a partner in building it. Why carry arms," al-Moallem said in an hour-long interview. "Those who want foreign intervention will not be among us."

The Foreign Minister accused Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey of arming and financing insurgents. He asserted that the Islamist faction Jabhat al-Nusra, which the US has declared a terrorist organisation, has brought fighters from 27 countries.

Meanwhile, Turkey's State news agency Anadolu said the Assad air force killed and wounded dozens on people when it targeted a mosque and a school building that was sheltering displaced Syrians in the town of Salqin, about four miles (six kilometres) from the border with Turkey in Idlib Province.

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The Latest from Iran (30 July): Declaring The "Resistance Economy"

See also Iran Feature: PhotoShopping a "Decent" Assad Family
The Latest from Iran (29 July): US Presents "Contingency Plan" for Attack to Israel

1351 GMT: Espionage Watch. According to The Times of India, Delhi Police have alleged that members of the Revolutionary Guards were involved in the 13 February bomb attack on an Israeli diplomat in the Indian capital.

The investigation report states that the five Guards members had discussed the plan to attack Israeli diplomats in India and other countries with Indian journalist Syed Mohammad Ahmad Kazmi in January 2011, after Iranian nuclear scientists were allegedly attacked by Israeli intelligence services.

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Syria, Bahrain (and Beyond) LiveBlog: An Activist's Death Sparks Protests

Demonstration in Aleppo, Syria last night, expressing solidarity with the slain Meshaal Tammo

Bahrain Special: Zainab Omran Tells Her Story of Abuse in Detention --- Part 2
Yemen Feature: Nobel Prize Winner Karman "Our Revolution is Uniting Yemen"
Bahrain Special: Zainab Omran Tells Her Story of Detention at City Center Mall
Saturday's Syria, Bahrain (and Beyond) LiveBlog: A Celebration in Yemen, A Killing in Qamishli

2217 GMT: Mohammad Sudam, a Reuters correspondent in Yemen, was kidnapped on Saturday night in Sana’a by forces loyal to defected General Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar, according to Ministry of Defence announced on Sunday.

Sudam, who is also a translator for President Saleh, was arrested at a checkpoint run by Al Ahmar’s troop as he travelled from Sana’a airport to his house.

The Yemen Journalist’s Syndicate condemned the arrest of Sudam and called for his immediate release.

2215 GMT: We are getting unconfirmed reports that the Syrian military is shelling Homs, the country's third-largest city, tonight. It is impossible to verify this at the moment, as almost all communication with the city is cut off.

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Syria (and Beyond) LiveBlog: Overwhelmed by Protests

2115 GMT: More night demonstrations in Syria, first in Homs, then in Kafranbel in the northwest:

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Syria, Libya (and Beyond) LiveBlog: "Death Squads"?

1920 GMT: (James accidentally killed this update by Scott, so it is reposted) Video of a protest tonight in the Kafar Souseh section of Damascus:

And women in Keswah chant, "Where are the detainees?"

1915 GMT: There are multiple reports of protests and clashes in Douma, Harasta, Zabadani, Qaboun, and other areas near Damascus, Syria. This is perhaps the most concerning, though unconfirmed, report:

"Security thugs attacked the about 100 protesters in #Qimaryee in #Damascus very aggressively using knifes"

1845 GMT: Along with video from today's protests (below) come reports (from multiple sources, including the LCCS) of an ongoing security crackdown in Zabadani (Zabadany), in the Damascus governate (northwest of center of city):

Damascus Suburbs: yesterday 19 July, Zabadany is still besieged suffering from several security barriers on all entrances and on branch roads leading to farms some tanks are also there. Moving barriers on roads leading to Serghaia and on other roads from and to Zabadany. The arresting campaigns continued by raiding houses, work places, at barriers and even for some people walking in streets. Some motorcycles were confiscated. Even though with the very difficult conditions people went out to streets to demonstrate yelling for freedom and to topple the regime

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