Syria Update, April 14, 2013. (Institute of Middle Eastern, Islamic and Strategic Studies. By Sherifa Zuhur)
Early death toll: More than 130 killed including 33 children.
Saturday’s death toll: 160 killed including 65 civilians.
What might the United States do in Syria to hasten Assad’s departure?
An anti-regime demonstration today in Damascus
The Syrian government dismissed claims regarding chemical weapons use issued in the UK (see below) saying that if they had not consented to a soil sample, then the results have no validity. http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2013/04/15/Syria-dismisses-unfounded-British-report-on-chemical-weapons.html
In areas seized from Assad, opposition groups disagree on the legal authority to be adopted – Islamic, pseudo-traditional or modern and civil-based. http://latitude.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/04/11/a-tale-of-two-courts/
UK’s Ministry of Defense says some kind of chemical weapons were used in Syria in December (as the opposition has claimed). http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/news/world/middleeast/article3738391.ece
Italian journalists seized in Syria were released. Yesterday.
Refugees and Relief:
Syrian refugees in Dohuk, Iraq.
Aleppo province: https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=map+of+aleppo+province&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x152ff85ac00b17c9:0xf68ea3d8dc74b61b,Aleppo+Governorate,+Syria&gl=us&ei=R9DLUKfTFoWO0QHBuIHABA&ved=0CC8Q8gEwAA
A car bomb attack on an intelligence center in al-Furqan near Nadi al-Dhabbat killed two and wounded 18, including 3 from al-Fada’iya’s team, Shadi Helw, the Aleppo correspondent, and two cameramen, Yahya Moussali and Ahmed Suleiman – Moussail was badly hurt and there were clashes at a nearby checkpoint.
Damascus province: https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=map+of+damascus+province&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x1518e6dc413cc6a7:0x69e5b88ad5b0817b,Damascus+Governorate,+Syria&gl=us&ei=_s_LUPTwHqWw0AHTtYDQAg&ved=0CC8Q8gEwAA
One report says that 10 children were killed in al-Qaboun (another says 5 civilians, including 2 children) by aerial bombardment. The Syrian air force carried out air raids on the edges of the Jobar neighborhood.
Syrian military shelling on Jaraman killed 4 civilians and injured 20. The Syrian military shelled areas of Beit Sahm. Syrian government forces retreated from the town of Hafir al-Foqa in al-Qalamoun after they had previously stormed it some days ago, and there were clashes there with the opposition. The Syrian military shelled al-Thiyabiya and al-Ghouta al-Sharqiya with rocket launchers. Syrian helicopters and airplanes bombarded the town of al-Nashabiya town and the agricultural areas around Douma. Five men and 1 opposition fighter were killed by clashes with regular forces in the A’rbin town. Shelling on Hazrma killed one man. Four men from Zakiya town were tortured to death in government prisons.
Opposition fighters were clashing with regular forces in several areas of Daraya and regular forces shelled Harasta, Zamalka and al-Arqoub and carried out air raids on the village of Ghazal.
Warplanes bombarded the Sbeina and the Syrian military shelled the town of Babila.
Dara`a province: https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=map+of+daraa+province&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x15195fa1016e8de7:0xff6b41761235d49c,Daraa+Governorate,+Syria&gl=us&ei=u9DLUPDfIcXq0gGRwIHADQ&ved=0CC8Q8gEwAA
The Syrian military conducted air raids on Kherbet Ghazala. Regular forces bombarded the al-Qusour neighborhood, and shot to death a man from Tsil.
The Syrian military shot a man in al-Sheikh Muskin and they resumed the shelling
Clashes occurred between opposition and regular forces in al-Katiba and the Syrian air force carried out air raids on the town of A’lma.
The Syrian military destroyed the minaret of the historic al-`Umari mosque in the city of Dar`a on Saturday. The mosque dates back to the 7th century as it was built by Omar bin al-Khattab and had been targeted for several days. At the outset of the Syrian revolution, this mosque was where the first martyrs fell and demonstrations issued from it. http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2013/04/14/Historic-mosque-in-Daraa-destroyed-in-Syrian-army-shelling-.html
Deir az-Zur province:
Clashes took place between opposition and regime forces in the al-Hweiqa and al-Jbeila, along with regime bombardment on the al-Hweiqa in the city of Deir az-Zur.
Deir az-Zur in ruins: http://www.liberation.fr/monde/2013/04/13/syrie-deir-ezzor-champ-de-ruines_895742#s1
On Saturday, Islamists, including members of al-Nusra Front denouncing civil and democratic state. They announce that only an Islamic state (caliphate) and flag will be created once they enter Damascus.
The regime forces carried out an air strike that killed at least 16 people in a majority Kurdish village of Haddad (which lies approximately 20 kilometers south of Qahtaniyya and 60 km north of Qamishli) today including 3 children and 2 women. (16 according to SOHR, 11 according to Reuters) http://uk.reuters.com/article/2013/04/14/uk-syria-crisis-raid-idUKBRE93D0DW20130414
Syrian regime aircraft carried out several air raids on Umm Keif located on the Ras al-`Ain road. The Syrian military resumed its shelling of the town of Tal Hamees.
Homs province: https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=homs+governorate+google+map&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x15230eeab10528a7:0x65655b88027a8699,Homs+Governorate,+Syria&gl=us&ei=BFPRUM6RBaTI0AHw1ICoCQ&ved=0CDMQ8gEwAA
The al-Khaldiya neighborhood of Homs was bombarded by regular forces with rocket launchers,
The opposition clashed with Hizbullah forces in Qusayr.
Syrian regular forces resumed the shelling of the city of al-Rastan. Clashes are took place between opposition fighters and regular forces supported by militants from the popular committees in several villages of al-Qseir.
Destruction in Homs
Idlib province: https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=idlib+governorate+google+map&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x152500e6cc6ed27b:0xe59a7e2f651fc24c,Idlib+Governorate,+Syria&gl=us&ei=51PRUIiREsaB0AHN_YD4BQ&ved=0CC8Q8gEwAA
Syrian troops broke through a lengthy opposition siege on two key military bases – Wadi ad-Dayf and Hamdiya killing at least 21 opposition fighters. The attack by the Syrian military focused on the village of Babulin and the residents of Babulin were shouting for the opposition to help them. Six cars with ammunition came from Sahyan to Hamidiyya following this breakthrough as regime forces delivered rmore reinforcements.
The regime forces bombarded the towns of Mer’yan, al-Tah and Kherbet Amouda. Violent clashes took place at the Zlito and A’in al-Sabil checkpoints resulting in casualities.
Clashes took place between opposition and regular forces on the outskirts of Baboulin village, along with helicopters hovering over the area. Regular forces bombarded the village of al-Janoudiya in the countryside of Jusr al-Shughour. Opposition fighters blew up a bridge on the Damascus-Ariha international road.
The Syrian military carried out an air raid on the outskirts of the city of Idlib.
The Syrian regime forces bombarded the Rabi`a area and the Salma summer resort.
Raqqa province: https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=map+of+ar-raqqah+province,+Syria&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x153719cee4c60ce7:0x9d4657e00e899ab6,Ar-Raqqah+Governorate,+Syria&gl=us&ei=PJ_bUKrTBObF0AGMuYHwBw&sqi=2&ved=0CC8Q8gEwAA
Syrian regime forces shelled the city of al-Raqqa.
The airforce executed several air raids near the 17th division resulting in injuries.
Shelling by the Syrian regime forces killed four children in the village of Hmeira al-Bweitiyya.
Two were killed and four injured in the Lebanese border town of Qasr in the Hermel area when artillery shelling from Syria breached the border.
Around the same town, Hizbullah fighters (or Hizbullah-based fighters) were patrolling: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/lebanese-shiite-fighters-backed-by-hezbollah-fighting-inside-syria-near-border/2013/04/14/58b4e360-a53e-11e2-9e1c-bb0fb0c2edd9_story.html
Lakhdar Brahimi may step down as UN-Arab League envoy on Syria. http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/world/brahimi-may-quit-as-unarab-league-envoy-on-syria/article4614425.ece