Syria/Lebanon News and Information Links
23-31 May 2005


STORM over deportation to Syria
International Herald Tribune – France
OTTAWA In 2002, when the US government seized Maher Arar as he changed
planes in New York and took him to Syria, the reason was starkly stated
in a Justice …

SYRIA deports Saudis amid US pressure
Minneapolis Star Tribune (subscription) – MN,USA
Word of the deportation comes amid intense pressure from the United States,
which accuses Damascus of permitting insurgents to stage their operations
from Syria …

CAPITAL votes in first Syria-free election
Nashua Telegraph – Nashua,NH,USA
BEIRUT, Lebanon (AP) — Beirut residents voted Sunday in the opening round
of the country’s first elections since Syria ended its 29-year domination
of …

RUSSIA and Syria sign deal on Syrian debt repayment
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
Russia and Syria signed an agreement in Damascus on the settlement of Syria’s
$13.4 billion debt to Russia on Sunday. The move comes …

HAFEZ Assad’s brother says he wants reform in Syria
Jerusalem Post – Jerusalem,Israel
His resemblance to his elder brother, Syria’s late president Hafez Assad
is astounding. As a behind-the-scenes strongman and head …

LEBANON’S slain leader’s son wins Parliament seat
Newsday – Long Island,NY,USA
BEIRUT, Lebanon — In Lebanon’s clannish politics, Saad Hariri has one
of the most important qualifications to become the country’s new prime
minister: He’s …,0,3586320.story?coll=ny-world-big-pix

‘CEDAR’ revolutionaries want more reform for Lebanon
ABC News – USA
… months after the Cedar Revolution, the movement ignited by Rafik Hariri’s
death that helped end Syrian domination over this country, Lebanon’s government
is …

WOULD Lebanon elections bring real change?
Washington Times – Washington,DC,USA
Beirut, Lebanon, May. … Both France and the United States advised that
the law was not to hinder efforts of speeding up the democratic process
in Lebanon. …

LEBANON is committed to UN resolutions, Hammoud
Arabic News – USA
… He stressed Lebanon is keen to have best relations with Europe, calling
on the EU countries to play its role in all issues that concern Arab countries.

LEBANON’S first free election for 30 years marred by voter apathy
Lebanon Wire – Ottawa,Ontario,Canada
… As expected, Saadine Hariri’s list swept all 19 seats in Lebanon’s
capital, although it is a shallow victory marred by voter apathy. …


LEBANON begins first Syria-free vote
Xinhua – Beijing,China
… Despite the crucial importance of the polls there has been little sign
of an intense battle as many of Syria’s once-powerful allies have thrown
in the towel …

RUSSIA writes off nearly 3/4 of Syria’s $13b. debt
Jerusalem Post – Jerusalem,Israel
Russia signed a deal on Sunday to write off nearly three-quarters of Syria’s
US$13 billion (•10.4 billion) debt in a bid to boost economic relations
between …

SYRIA moves briskly toward stalemate
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
Accused by the United States of aiding the insurgents in Iraq – and facing
a real danger of attack – Syria has not enhanced its international reputation
by …

SYRIA hands over Saudis caught on way to Iraq-SPA
Reuters AlertNet – London,England,UK
RIYADH, May 29 (Reuters) – Syria has handed over to Saudi Arabia more than
30 Saudis who were trying to cross into Iraq, Saudi Arabia’s Interior
Minister …

LEBANON begins first Syria-free vote
Xinhua – Beijing,China
BEIJING, May 30 — Polling stations opened in Beirut on Sunday for the
first round of Lebanon’s first general elections in three decades free
of Syrian troops …

IRAN’S FM: Hezbollah role in Lebanon effective
IranMania News – Iran
LONDON, May 28 (IranMania) – Visiting Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi
said Hezbollah plays an effective role in Lebanon’s developments. …

PRESS unease over Lebanon poll
BBC News – UK
As Lebanon goes to the polls in the first parliamentary elections in 30
years free from the presence of foreign troops, newspapers in the region
are far from …

MAINE police agencies probing ‘gang-related’ incident in Lebanon
Foster’s Daily Democrat – Dover,NH,USA
LEBANON, Maine — Three police agencies are investigating a possible gang-related
incident that unfolded here Friday night involving a group of 20 to 25

LEBANON starts parliamentary election
Al-Bawaba – Amman,Jordan
Voting started in Beirut on Sunday in Lebanon’s first parliamentary polls
since the Syrian military withdrawal. A 19-member ticket …


LEBANON heads to polls in post-Syria election
ABC Online – Australia
One month after Syria’s withdrawal of its troops from Lebanon, historic
parliamentary elections are due to be held in Beirut today. …

SYRIA Arrests 300 Saudis: Report
Arab News – Jeddah,Saudi Arabia
… airport in Damascus. “The Saudis had gone to Syria to spend their holidays,”
the paper quoted the relatives as saying. A Saudi …

ASSAD’S Uncle Calls for Reform in Syria
Los Angeles Times – CA,USA
By SCHEHEREZADE FARAMARZI, Associated Press Writer. MARBELLA, Spain —
His resemblance to his older brother, Syria’s late President Hafez Assad
is astounding. …

RIA Novosti – Moscow,Russia
MOSCOW, May 28 (RIA Novosti) – Tomorrow, on May 29, Russian Finance Minister
Alexei Kudrin is to sign in Damascus an Agreement on Settlement of Syria’s
Debt to …

SYRIA and the Iraqi Insurgency
NPR (audio) – Washington,D.C.,USA
Flynt Leverett, a former Middle East specialist on the National Security
Council, talks about Syria’s role in the Iraqi insurgency. …

WHO’S who in Lebanon’s election
BBC News – UK
… Lebanon’s two main Shia groups, Hezbollah and Amal, have formed the
Resistance, Liberation and Development list in their heartland in the
south. …

SUMMARY Box: Lebanon Holding Elections
Newsday – Long Island,NY,USA
… Voting starts Sunday in Beirut, followed by south Lebanon on June 5;
central Mount Lebanon and the eastern Bekaa Valley on June 12; and north
Lebanon on June 19 …

FROM afar, carrying hope for Lebanon
Minneapolis Star Tribune (subscription) – MN,USA
… heady days in April — when throngs of demonstrators demanded this
moment of democracy — has collapsed, said Constantin, 30, who left Lebanon
three years ago …

IRAN, Lebanon momentous discussions on regional issues
Tehran Times – Tehran,Iran
BEIRUT — Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi asserted here on Thursday that
Iran is sure Lebanon will pass this sensitive and historical juncture
by relying on …

ANTI-SYRIAN parties win uncontested Lebanon races
Jerusalem Post – Jerusalem,Israel
Druse leader Walid Jumblatt and his ally, Marwan Hamadeh, have won uncontested
seats in Lebanon’s parliamentary elections, bringing to 17 out of 128
the number …

LEBANESE intellectuals denounce arrests in Syria
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
Sixty Lebanese intellectuals on Friday published a petition denouncing
the detention of political activists in Syria and calling for an end to
what they termed …

RUSSIAN Government Approves Writing Off $9.7Bln of Syria’s Debt
MOSNEWS – Russia
On Thursday, May 26, the Russian government approved draft legislation
that presupposes writing off 73 percent of Syria’s state debt to Russia,
RIA Novosti …

RUSSIA, Lebanon oppose continuing pressure on Syria – Moscow,Russia
May 27 (Interfax) – Russia and Lebanon believe that putting pressure on
Syria following its troop withdrawal from Lebanon is counterproductive
for stability in …

IN Syria, Weighing Risks
Washington Post – Washington,DC,USA
Let us try to read the mind of Syria’s president, Bashar Assad, as he prepares
for a June 6 congress of his ruling Baath Party that he hopes will ease
the …

LEBANESE condemn arrest of Syria activists
Washington Times – Washington,DC,USA
… Safir, in addition to dozens of intellectuals, sounded the alarm over
the growing crackdown on public liberties and freedom of expression in
Syria, the latest …

CANDIDATES worry about apathy with Lebanon elections set to begin
Kansas City Star – MO,USA
BEIRUT, Lebanon – (KRT) – With Syrian forces gone and international monitors
in place, Lebanon begins monthlong elections Sunday that are expected
to be the …

IRAN highlights Hezbollah role in defending Lebanon against Israel
People’s Daily Online – Beijing,China
Visiting Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi highlighted the important
role played by Hezbollah in defending Lebanon against Israel, an official
statement …

LEBANON gets ready for ‘free’ election
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
By Majdoline Hatoum. BEIRUT: Lebanon’s most eagerly awaited parliamentary
election in years kicks off in Beirut tomorrow. The polls …

ECONOMIC reforms a must after Lebanon elections: Experts
Peninsula On-line – Qatar
BEIRUT: Lebanon has averted financial meltdown despite an acute political
crisis. Initial pressure on its currency has eased. The …

EDITORS Notes: Not like Lebanon at all
Jerusalem Post – Jerusalem,Israel
… unique perspective: It was Ashkenazi who, as the general in charge
of the Northern Command, oversaw Israel’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon,
under Hizbullah …


SYRIA says 1,200 stopped trying to infiltrate Iraq
Reuters AlertNet – London,England,UK
UNITED NATIONS, May 26 (Reuters) – Syria’s UN ambassador said on Tuesday
his country had arrested some 1,200 people over the past few months to
prevent them …

SYRIA says thousands arrested trying to cross into Iraq
ReliefWeb (press release) – Geneva,Switzerland
New York (dpa) – Syria said Thursday it has arrested as many as 1,200 people
trying to cross into Iraq in recent weeks as part of efforts to counter

US hit rebels on road to Syria
The State – Columbia,SC,USA
HADITHA, Iraq — More than 1,000 US troops swept into this city on the
road to Syria on Wednesday to root out insurgents — including those loyal
to …

RIA Novosti – Moscow,Russia
MOSCOW, May 26 (RIA Novosti) – On Thursday, the Russian government approved
a draft resolution providing for Russia’s writeoff of 73% of Syria’s state
debt. …

CSIS visited Syria as Arar sat in prison
Globe and Mail – Toronto,Ontario,Canada
OTTAWA — Officials from the Canadian Security Intelligence Service visited
Syria in November of 2002 in connection with the detention of Maher Arar,
but all …

HEIR apparent in Lebanon
ABC News – USA
… BEIRUT Three months after Rafik Hariri’s assassination sparked political
upheaval in Lebanon, his son has emerged as the leading contender to head
the next …

LEBANON Will Hold First Elections Free of Syrian Influence
Voice of America – USA
By Jeff Swicord. Beginning Sunday (May 29), Lebanon will hold it’s parliamentary
elections by district over four successive weekends. …

US unconvinced by Syrianwithdrawal from Lebanon
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
… US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Washington remains unconvinced
that Syria has fully withdrawn its intelligence units from Lebanon and
warned …

LEBANON suffers third-highest software piracy rate in MENA region
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
BEIRUT: Lebanon made no progress in combating software piracy in 2004 and
has the third highest software piracy rates in the Middle East and North
Africa region …

IRAN defends Hizbollah’s right to arms in Lebanon
Reuters – USA
BEIRUT (Reuters) – Iran said on Thursday a UN resolution demanding that
militias in Lebanon disarm does not apply to the Hizbollah guerrilla group
it supports. …


SYRIA seeks Mideast peace through cooperation: top legislator
People’s Daily Online – Beijing,China
Syria seeks to achieve stability, security and peace in the Middle East
through regional and international cooperation, the official SANA news
agency quoted …

CSIS visited Syria during Arar’s detention
CTV – Canada
OTTAWA — Canada’s spy agency paid a mysterious visit to Syria in the fall
of 2002 while Maher Arar was in detention there on suspicion of terrorist
activity. …

SYRIA continues crackdown on political dissent
ISN – Zurich,Switzerland
Police detained all eight board members of the al-Atassi Forum on National
Dialog, the latest arrests in a campaign of increased pressure on Syria’s
weak …

SYRIA Says US Ignored Cooperation Efforts
Los Angeles Times – CA,USA
DAMASCUS, Syria — Syria stopped security and military cooperation with
the United States months ago because Washington failed to respond to repeated

DID Syria End Its Hegemony Over Lebanon?
World Press Review – USA
Anger over the Feb. 14 assassination of former premier Rafiq Hariri helped
turn the tide against Syria’s long-time presence in Lebanon. …

RICE says scheduled Lebanon’s elections “good step forward”
Xinhua – Beijing,China
””WASHINGTON, May 25 (Xinhuanet) — US Secretary of State Condoleezza
Rice said on Wednesday that Lebanon’s upcoming parliamentary elections
will be a “good …

LEBANON’S ready to vote but obstacles to change remain
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
Syria’s withdrawal from Lebanon has increased freedom in the country, but
Lebanon still faces internal threats: self-serving political leaders,
a strange power …

LEBANON’S Hizbollah Says It Will Fight to Keep Arms
Los Angeles Times – CA,USA
BEIRUT — Under mounting international pressure to disarm, Lebanon’s Hizbollah
said on today it had more than 12,000 rockets that could strike anywhere
in …

LEBANON Celebrates Anniversary of Liberation
Voice of America – USA
Lebanon commemorated the end of the Israeli occupation of the south of
the country Wednesday, with the majority of businesses and schools closing
to mark the …

LEBANON Readies for Historic Elections
NPR (audio) – Washington,D.C.,USA
… Pressure for serious to withdraw from Lebanon last February after the
assassination of former Prime Minister rest the career he Syria was blamed
for his death …


US keeps up heat on Syria
Sify – Taramani,Chennai,India
Washington: Despite Syria’s military withdrawal from Lebanon, the United
States looks determined to keep the pressure on Damascus over a host of
issues, from …

‘SYRIA doesn’t need military to control Lebanon’
Jerusalem Post – Jerusalem,Israel
Marzouk, formerly head of the Lebanon desk in army intelligence, stressed
that there had been reliable reports from Lebanon that Syria’s security
and …

SYRIA quashes last dialogue forum
BBC News – UK
Eight members of Syria’s only active political forum have been arrested
in the latest crackdown on dissent. All the board members …

PAK-SYRIA JMC, concludes its 5th session in Damascus
Pakistan Link – Inglewood,CA,USA
ISLAMABAD, May 24 : Pak-Syria Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC) concluded
its 5th session in Damascus on Tuesday. Pakistan delegation …

SYRIA Faces Pressures to Democratize
NPR (audio) – Washington,D.C.,USA
Description: Syria is under intense international pressure. … Syria is
still a country where wealth comes from connections to the ruling family.

LEBANON election promises sea change – Doha,Qatar
Free of the shackles of its powerful neighbour Syria, Lebanon votes on
Sunday in what is being hailed as the first truly free elections in three
decades – with …

‘SYRIA doesn’t need military to control Lebanon’
Jerusalem Post – Jerusalem,Israel
The inability of a UN team to categorically confirm the withdrawal of all
Syrian intelligence operative from Lebanon comes as no surprise, leading
analyst Lt …

LEBANON’S president says war with Israel is legitimate
Ha’aretz – Tel Aviv,Israel
BEIRUT – On the eve of the fifth anniversary of Israel’s withdrawal from
Lebanon, President Emile Lahoud yesterday vowed to recover a disputed
border area and …

LIBERATION Day celebrated in South Lebanon
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
SIDON: Five years after the liberation of South Lebanon from Israeli forces,
dozens of Israeli tanks remain scattered in various towns and villages
as living …

LEBANON affirms support for resistance
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
… The unexpected meeting between Mikati and Lebanon’s most influential
Shiite bloc leader comes after the Lebanese-Israeli joint borders in the
South witnessed …


UN confirms Syria army withdrawal
BBC News – UK
… all empty. Syria promised to pull out following a UN resolution demanding
its withdrawal, and anti-Syrian protests in Beirut. The …

SYRIA Stops Cooperating With US Forces and CIA
New York Times – New York,NY,USA
WASHINGTON, May 23 – Syria has halted military and intelligence cooperation
with the United States, its ambassador to Washington said in an interview,
in a …

ECONOMIC sanctions on Syria “one step below” military action – London,UK
The United States renewed economic sanctions on Syria are a step away from
another US military action on a Middle Eastern country, a US Congress
member said in …

PAK-SYRIA JMC can play a vital role in IT, Agri, Industrial & …
Pakistan Link – Inglewood,CA,USA
ISLAMABAD, May 23 : Federal Minister for Petroleum & Natural Resources
Amanullah Khan Jadoon has said that Pakistan and Syria enjoy close and
friendly …

SYRIA: Government upgrades disaster management
Reuters AlertNet – London,England,UK
… He said that Syria needed to make preparations for a more serious earthquake.
… “The major natural hazards affecting Syria are earthquakes, fires
and floods. …

UN Team Verifies Full Syrian Withdrawal from Lebanon
Voice of America – USA
By Peter Heinlein. A UN inspection team has verified the full withdrawal
of all Syrian troops from Lebanon. Secretary General Kofi …

LEBANON’S opposition remain divided over election alliances
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
BEIRUT: With less than a week to polling day, Lebanon’s political opposition
remains hopelessly divided over whether it will join forces to fight this
month’s …

SOUTH Lebanon: the boom that never came
Middle East Online – UK
By Jihad Siqlaoui – LEBANON-ISRAEL BORDER. Lebanese residents near the
border with Israel had high hopes for an economic recovery …

ANALYSIS: Lessons not learned from Lebanon
Jerusalem Post – Jerusalem,Israel
Ironically, as Israel marks the fifth anniversary of the pullout from south
Lebanon, reports surfaced of senior officers seeking to alter the timetable
of the …


LEADERS of Palestinian factions in Syria hold talks on truce
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
Leaders of major Damascus-based Palestinian factions held a rare public
meeting to follow up on a truce with Israel reached earlier this year
and on the …

SYRIA Arrest Head of Human Rights Group
Los Angeles Times – CA,USA
DAMASCUS, Syria — Syrian security forces raided local offices of an Arab
human rights group early Sunday and arrested its leader, according to
a statement by …,1,6789751.story?coll=sns-ap-world-headlines

IRAQI government demands Syria must do more to prevent …
Winnipeg Sun – Winnipeg,Manitoba,Canada
BAGHDAD (AP) – Syria most likely knows that its territory is being used
by foreign fighters infiltrating into Iraq and must do more to prevent
them from …

THREE Kurds jailed for 30 months in Syria
KurdishMedia – UK
DAMASCUS, May 22 (AFP) – 17h55 – Syria’s state security court on Sunday
sentenced three Kurdish activists to prison terms of 30 months for “membership
of a …

MIKATI addresses controversial subject of Lebanese detained in …
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
Speaking after the Saturday meeting, Khoury said Lebanon and Syria have
agreed to create departments in both the Lebanese and Syrian Labor Ministries
to …

AOUN-JUMBLATT alliance unlikely in Lebanon polls
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
BEIRUT: With less than a week left to go before the start of the first
leg of Lebanon’s Parliamentary elections, the electoral alliance between
leader of the …

LEBANON’S forgotten crowds won’t stay silent if their leaders fail …
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
… intolerable situation. But what now? Has Lebanon’s political class
outrun those whom it wants to serve and now become self-serving? By all

FIVE years after withdrawal from south Lebanon:
Jerusalem Post – Jerusalem,Israel
… were in bomb shelters or had temporarily left the city fearing heavy
rocket bombardments as the IDF completed its withdrawal from Lebanon and
thousands of …

LEBANON’S Election: Free but Not Fair
Washington Post – Washington,DC,USA
… like ghost ships. Entrenched imbalance: Posters in downtown Beirut
tout Lebanon’s upcoming parliamentary elections. But the “confessional

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