Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

6/20/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Regime forces bolstered by winning a strategic border town further north

Syrian rebels besieged in the outskirts of Damascus say a steady advance by President Bashar al-Assad's forces is upon them. The besieged fighters say they are pinning their hopes on an anticipated influx of weapons from the Jordanian border. The rebels are now struggling to fight back against government forces, who have gained a foothold by winning a strategic border town further north. They are also being aided by Lebanese Hezbollah militants and Shi'ite Iraqi fighters.

Jordanian troops bow their heads in prayer near the border they share with Syria in August of last year.

Jordanian troops bow their heads in prayer near the border they share with Syria in August of last year.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/20/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: Rebels, Syria, weapons, Jordan, G8 meeting. encroachment


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "The regime's goal is to slowly bleed us until we are forced to surrender. They are advancing slowly to preserve their fighting force," Amran, an activist speaking by Skype from the ring of suburbs known as the Eastern Ghouta says.

The success of the rebellion may now very well hinge on military support from Western and Arab backers. "We can survive for a long time, because our fighters know the terrain, but until we get weapons we cannot repel the advance," Amran said.

A recent United States decision to give Syrian rebels military support gave hopes that an arms pipeline from Jordan would reopen. The influx of weapons was shut down as the both the U.S. and Russia negotiated a planned "Geneva 2" peace conference. The recent G8 meeting saw no narrowing of the differences between Moscow, Assad's main arms supplier, and Washington, which wants Assad to step down in any transition.

In spite of a reluctance on the part of U.S. officials to describe what aid may be forthcoming, the mostly Sunni Muslim rebels expect Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia to step up support to help them fight Assad, who is chiefly backed by Riyadh's regional Shi'ite rival Iran in a two-year conflict that has become increasingly regionalized.

"We had several meetings in Jordan and Ankara and discussed opening the weapons pipeline to the Damascus rebels from Jordan. I expect good news soon ... We will be getting advanced weaponry but I cannot say what kind," Abu Moaz al-Agha, a spokesman and commander from the Ansar al-Islam brigades in Damascus says.

Rebels say they want anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons to challenge the dominance of Assad's air force, which has allowed him to keep rebels on the defensive even in their own territories through daily air strikes.

"We still need time to plan out the system for delivering the weapons. But I am hoping that within 30 days there will be changes on the ground," Agha said, speaking by Skype.

Rebels surrounding Damascus lost nearly all their supply lines and are struggling to get enough food, let alone weapons, into the eastern and southern outskirts of the capital.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2014
Refugees:
That refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights.
Oceania: That Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.



Comments


More Middle East

Steven Sotloff beheading video, uncensored (WARNING GRAPHIC VIDEO)

Image of American Journalist, Steven Sotloff, has been executed by the Islamic State.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Islamic State has executed another hostage, this time beheading American journalist Steven Sotloff. A video has been released of the incident, but due to alleged self-censorship across the web, the footage has been suppressed. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


Pope Francis thanks Gaza's sole Catholic priest; tells him to 'have courage' Watch

Image of Father Hernandez and three Missionaries of Charity were the only religious left at Holy Family Church during a 50-day battle between Israeli forces and Hamas militants.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Father Jorge Hernandez, the Gaza Strip's sole Catholic parish met with Pope Francis at the Vatican, thanking him for his support of those suffering in the war-torn territory. Speaking to Vatican Radio, the 36-year-old priest says that the Pope continued to ... continue reading


Islamic puritans threaten dissent in Saudi kingdom, asking King Abdullah to DESTROY the tomb of MOHAMED! Watch

Image of Wahhabi clerics are asking King Abdullah to destroy the tomb of Mohamed.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A recommendation from some Saudi clerics to Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah is creating controversy in the powerful Middle-Eastern kingdom. The proposal, set forth by hardline clerics, calls for the destruction of the tomb of Mohammed and possibly the shrine at Mecca, to ... continue reading


Paul Bhatti, Brother of Martyr Shabhaz Bhatti, Urges Pope Francis to Visit Persecuted Christians in Pakistan. Watch

Image of The Christian Martyr of Pakistan, Shabhaz Bhatti,

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

The world should pause once again to consider the Christian heroism shown by Shabhaz Bhatti in 2011. At the time, Shahbaz Bhatti was the only Christian member of the Parliament of Pakistan. He was executed in cold blood by militant Islamists on March 2, 2011. He ... continue reading


World 'cannot keep silent about the existence of the so-called ISIS,' patriarchs declare Watch

Image of The recent summit addressing IS was presided over by Cardinal Bechara Rai, Maronite patriarch.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Meeting at the Maronite Catholic patriarchate at Bkerke, north of Beirut, Catholic and Orthodox patriarchs convened for a special summit to address the crisis in Iraq and Syria. Later joined by the United Nations' special coordinator in Lebanon and the ... continue reading


U.S., Europe next on Islamic State's list to attack, Saudi king warns Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

As the world grows more appalled by the day about the inhumanities conducted by the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah warns that the west is not immune. A staunch ally of both the U.S. and its allies, Saudi King Abdullah bin ... continue reading


Fleeing imminent death, three million Syrians now registered in other countries. That's half the population of Syria. Watch

Image of A bride crossing the Israel-Syria border.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"The Syrian crisis has become the biggest humanitarian emergency of our era, yet the world is failing to meet the needs of refugees and the countries hosting them," Antonio Guterres, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, said in a statement. As of this ... continue reading


Video shows rows of bodies as 250 Syrian soldiers DEATH MARCHED, forced to chant praises to their executioners before being killed (Warning: PHOTOS)

Image of Forced to chant praised to their executioners, jubilant ISIS terrorists killed approximately 250 Syrian prisoners.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Islamic State has committed another atrocity, this time murdering as many as 250 Syrian soldiers following a half-naked death-march across the desert sand to their place of execution. The entire way, as a video reveals, the men were compelled to chant and sing ... continue reading


Yazidi women held prisoners by IS sold as sex slaves, jihadist brides Watch

Image of Women held captive by ISIS have their newborn babies taken from them -- to never be seen again.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In just the latest devaluation of humanity in the ongoing war in Iraq and Syria, hundreds of Yazidi women being held prisoner by Islamic State fighters to be sold off as sex slaves or wives. They are selling these women for as little as $25. They are repeatedly ... continue reading


Islamic State invasion 'pure and simple religious cleansing and attempted genocide' Watch

Image of Patriarch Younan says that in the Kurdistan region,

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Syriac Catholic Patriarch Ignace Joseph III Younan has returned from the Kurdish region of Iraq, and what he has seen has been harrowing indeed. What he made of the handiwork of Islamic State, he said, "is a pure and simple religious cleansing and attempted ... continue reading


All Middle East News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 2:10-16
10 to us, though, God has given revelation through ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 145:8-9, 10-11, 12-13, 13-14
8 Yahweh is tenderness and pity, slow to anger, full ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 4:31-37
31 He went down to Capernaum, a town in Galilee, and ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 2nd, 2014 Image

St. Ingrid of Sweden
September 2: Born in Skänninge, Sweden, in the 13th century, St. Ingrid lived ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter