A Day in Syria: April 25th 2018
By Caroline Pearse & Harald Etzbach
- According to Reporters Without Borders, with 13 journalists killed in 2017, more than 20 journalists and journalist-citizens held hostage, Syria stagnating 177th, remains the most dangerous country in the world for the profession and ranks last in the Middle East. Syria expels its journalists, and entire regions have become black holes of information.
- According to CNN, the US Secret Service has observed several cargo flights carrying products from Iran to Syria, which may be weapons sent to Bashar al-Assad or to Iranian forces in Syria.
- Three key members of the Syrian Opposition Coalition based in Istanbul resigned this morning. Among them is Georges Sabra, the president of the Syrian National Council. The coalition founded on 11 November 2012, had created the provisional Government and had great support from several countries. It has been increasingly abandoned in the last few years.
- A ceasefire was signed yesterday between Jabhat Tahrir Souriya and Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS). The two armed groups fought for control of part of the provinces of Aleppo and Idlib. JTS is more moderate and supportive of the revolution, HTS is closer to Al Qaeda.
- Today Russian aviation has targeted the city of Kafranbel and several localities in Idlib province, leading at least to one death.
- Several leaders of Jaysh al-Islam were killed yesterday in Yalda and Beit Sahm, neighborhoods of the Yarmouk Camp. An agreement for a departure to the north for these neighborhoods was announced on Monday night without a follow-up.
- According to militants, 22 people were killed before the end of the day by the bombing of the camp of Al-Yarmouk in the south of Damascus by the regime, including five unknown people, one child and one woman.
- English: Russian/Syrian forces targeted Qadam, Al-Yarmouk Camp, Al-Hajar al-Aswad & Al-Tadhamon neighbourhoods with more than 85 airstrikes, 30 barrel bombs, 56 GGM and dozens of artillery shells
- Yesterday the inmates of Sweida prison began a hunger strike to protest against executions and ill-treating.
- A large-scale exchange of prisoners between Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) and Lebanese Hezbollah Shiite militia near the village of al-Eiss in the South province of Aleppo.
- At the second Brussels Conference for the future of Syria, the international community committed itself to fund the humanitarian aid provided in 2018 to the Syrian population and refugees with 4.4 billion dollars (about 3.6 billion euros)
- The Kremlin says it has nothing to do with Russian civilians fighting in Syria but on three recent occasions groups of men flying in from Damascus headed straight to a Defense ministry base in Molkino, Reuters reporters witnessed.)
- According to le Monde, Emmanuel Macron had to convince Donald Trump to limit his strikes on the chemical arsenal. The strike took place on the night of 13 to 14 April in response to the chemical massacre in Duma. It has destroyed research centers and chemical weapons manufacturing sites. It did not cause any casualties.
- According to the magazine Breaking Defense, the test of weapons of electronic warfare is at its height between Russia and the United States. In the airspace of Syria, Russia attacked and deactivated in an “aggressive” way electronic devices on the EC-130, according to the American Special Operations Command. The EC-130 is an American military aircraft specializing in electronic jamming.
- Lubna Alkanawati, the director of women Now For Development, gave a speech yesterday at the Brussels Conference on the need to include Syrian women in all levels and stages of negotiations about Syria, since they represent a vital part of Syrian society that needs to be heard.
- Image of the day: Yesterday Pascal Henrion, French militant photographer, hang from the Atomium in Brussels while the Conference of the Friends of the Syrian people took place in the Belgian capital. With his action he denounced the bombardment of the children of Syria by the regime and Russia and the use of the chemical weapon.
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