摘要：5.53pm BST Summary Thank you for all your comments today. Here are the key developments: • Regime helicopters have shelled the key city of Aleppo and clashes have continued on the ground between regim
Thank you for all your comments today. Here are the key developments:
•Regime helicopters have shelled the key city of Aleppo and clashes have continued on the ground between regime forces and rebel fighters, according to opposition activists. . Aleppo-based activist Mohammed Saeed told AP the shelling was most intense in the south-western neighborhoods of Salaheddin and Saif al-Dawla. The government said security agents were hunting down armed groups in Salaheddin. Video purported to show that a government shell had set a plastics factory ablaze in Aleppo.
• Shelling has also been reported by opposition activists in Damascus, Deraa, Hama, Homs and Idlib. There have been clashes rebels and government troops have been reported in Deir Ezzor and Hasaekeh. The Local Coordination Committees opposition activist group claims 21 people have been killed in Sheikh Miskeen, Deraa, alone by security forces. This report cannot be independently verified by the Guardian.
•The Syrian foreign minister, Walid al-Moualem, vowed that the rebels in Aleppo would be defeated as would the "conspiracy" against the country. On a visit to Tehran to meet his counterpart, Ali Akbar Salehi, Moualem accused Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey of supporting a plot hatched by Israel to destroy Syria. Salehi said the idea that there would be an orderly transition of power if the Assad regime fell from power was "a dream ...an illusion".
•The Syrian opposition has appealed for its foreign allies to provide with heavy weapons to fight President Bashar al-Assad's "killing machine". The Syrian National Council (SNC) also said it would soon start talks on forming a transitional government to replace him. "The rebels are fighting with primitive weapons. We want weapons that we can stop tanks and planes with. This is what we want," Abdelbasset Sida, head of the SNC said. The SNC is an umbrella opposition group but has been riven by internal dissent and external criticism, questioning its legitimacy.
• The Arab League chief, Dr Nabil Elaraby, described the situation in as amounting to war crimes and said those responsible will be held accountable internationally, Egypt's state news agency said on Sunday
•Jordan opened its first tent camp for Syrians fleeing violence in their country. "Reality has pushed us to open this camp," Interior Minister Ghaleb Zoubi told a gathering of aid officials during the camp's opening in the hamlet of Zataari, about 11 kilometers (7 miles) from the Syrian border. Some 142,000 Syrians are seeking refuge in their southern neighbour and the figure is growing daily by up to 2,000.
• Three Chinese warships crossed into the eastern Mediterranean today, joining 10 Russian warships and three US aircraft carriers, as well as dozens of Turkish military vessels.
Turkish reporter Mahir Zeynalov, from Today's Zaman, reports that, near Syria, making for quite a crowd.
The Arab League chief described the situation in Syria as amounting to war crimes and said those responsible will be held accountable internationally, Egypt's state news agency said on Sunday. Mena reported:
Dr Nabil Elaraby, secretary-general of the Arab League, described what is happening in Syria, especially the city of Aleppo, as amounting to war crimes, and warned that perpetrators of these crimes will be held internationally accountable.
Irish Times reporter Mary Fitzgerald is
Away from Aleppo, there have been reports of heavy casualties in Sheikh Miskeen, in Deraa, in the south.
The number of martyrs has risen to 21, due to fierce shelling and amid an attempt to raid the area by regime forces Some were slaughtered with knives
The fight has been going on for hours. Both rebel fighters and regular Syrian troops have lost members, others were injured; rebels destroyed several heavy military vehicles.
Restrictions on access and movement for foreign journalists mean the Guardian cannot independently verify these reports.
German prosecutors say they have filed criminal charges against a person suspected of spying for Syria, AP reports.
A spokeswoman for federal prosecutors said on Sunday that they have filed charges against a suspected Syrian spy but said she couldn't give any other details before they have confirmation that the suspect and the defence team have received the indictment.
She spoke on condition of anonymity in keeping with department rules. The weekly Der Spiegel, which didn't cite sources, identified the suspect as Akram O., who authorities have said are suspected of having spied on Syrian opposition activists in Germany for several years.
that the Free Syrian Army is in complete control of eight neighbourhoods in Aleppo city.
from the army in Aleppo.
In his dispatch (), Luke Harding quoted a opposition commander saying the regime was flying fighter jets over Aleppo to spook residents.
, in Aleppo countryside.
Luke Harding, in Aleppo province, has sent through the following update, which provides an insight into the resources on the opposing sides:
One military commander in Aleppo's rebel-held Boustan Alkasr province said shelling had continued all weekend. The commander - who declined to be named - was relatively pessimistic about the Free Syrian Army's chances of fending off repeated attacks. "The FSA has several hundred soldiers stationed inside Aleppo, and in total a bigger force in the area of around 2000. The regime has 100 tanks, we estimate, and about another 400 troop carriers and armoured vehicles. They also have 43 buses of Shabiha that have been brought inside Aleppo, with around 1500 soldiers. And the regime has helicopters."
The commander said that unless the opposition could get access to heavy weapons it would take "two to three years" to defeat Assad's military machine. But he also said he didn't think Damascus would carry out a large-scale "frontal assault" on Aleppo, Syria's biggest city; instead it would bomb rebel-held civilian districts from the sky. He add that the regime had flown fighter jets over the city: not to fire rockets but simply to spook residents - tens of thousands of whom have already fled.
Four FSA fighters were killed on Saturday in Saleheddin, a southern district that has seen some of the worst fighting, the commander said. The rebels remain in control of a crescent-shaped chunk of the city stretching from the east to the south, but are also encamped in villages just 13kms to the north. They entered the city on 20 July. The FSA has set up a network of checkpoints in the neighbourhoods it controls, run by young militia fighters, many of them extremely nervy.
Different rebel groups inside the city are struggling to communicate with each other. They have walkie-talkies. But the regime has hacked communications in recent days, with the internet and other services erratic.
Inside Aleppo, locals in FSA areas said they supported Syria's revolution against . But they complained about acute shortages of bread and fuel, and said they were terrified by the constant presence in the sky of helicopter gunships. In the Boustan Alkasr area at least 100 people queued up on Saturday outside a bread shop. "We have nothing to eat," one woman said, according to video footage smuggled out by activists.
Jordan has today opened its first tent camp for Syrians fleeing violence in their country, as government officials said a surge of refugees left them no other choice,.
Authorities had been reluctant to set up the camp, possibly to avoid angering Syrian President Bashar Assad's autocratic regime by concentrating images of civilians fleeing his military onslaught.
But with 142,000 Syrians seeking refuge in their southern neighbor and the figure growing daily by up to 2,000, Jordanian authorities said they simply had to act.
"Reality has pushed us to open this camp," Interior Minister Ghaleb Zoubi told a gathering of aid officials during the camp's opening in the hamlet of Zataari, about 11 kilometers (7 miles) from the Syrian border.
"We've hosted Syrians in our homes, in even larger numbers than where they have been housed in holding centers," he said. "This has created a pressure on Jordan, especially given the water and electricity shortages we face."
Jordan is one of the world's ten poorest countries in terms of water resources, and its electricity supplies have been sharply curbed due to militant bombings of a natural gas pipeline from Egypt that supplies power plants ...
Later on Sunday, about 600 refugees will be admitted to the camp after they break the fast they are following for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, UNHCR representative Andrew Harper said.
Neither Jordan nor the UN originally wanted to erect the tent camp in the desert under the summer heat during Ramadan, Harper said, acknowledging however that the crisis had left them with no other option.
"We've got no choice. Jordanian communities are overwhelmed with Syrians," he said, adding that transit facilities in the country designed to host 2,000 people were now brimming with five times that number. The new camp will initially host 5,000 refugees.
Summary of key developments
•Regime helicopters have shelled the key city of Aleppo and clashes have continued on the ground between regime forces and rebel fighters, according to opposition activists. . Aleppo-based activist Mohammed Saeed told AP the shelling was most intense in the south-western neighborhoods of Salaheddin and Saif al-Dawla. The government said security agents were hunting down armed groups in Salaheddin. The Local Coordination Committees activist group claimed nine people have been killed in Aleppo today by government troops, four of whom were unidentified corpses. The Guardian cannot independently verify the LCC report. Video purported to show that a government shell had set a plastics factory ablaze in Aleppo.
•The Syrian opposition has appealed for its foreign allies to provide with heavy weapons to fight President Bashar al-Assad's "killing machine". The Syrian National Council (SNC) also said it would soon start talks on forming a transitional government to replace him. "The rebels are fighting with primitive weapons. We want weapons that we can stop tanks and planes with. This is what we want," Abdelbasset Sida, head of the SNC said. The SNC is an umbrella opposition group bt has been riven by internal dissent and external criticism, questioning its legitimacy.
• Shelling has also been reported by opposition activists in Damascus, Hama and Homs. Clashes between rebels and government troops have been reported in Deraa and Hasaekeh. The LCC claims 11 people have been killed in Deraa, five each in Hama and Homs, five in Damascus and its suburbs and one in Idlib. These figures cannot be independently verified by the Guardian
•The Iranian foreign minister, Ali Akbar Salehi, said the idea that there would be an orderly transition of power if the Assad regime fell from power was "a dream ...an illusion". Salehi was speaking in Tehran during a visit by his Syrian counterpart Walid al-Moualem.
•The Syrian foreign minister said the government was committed to Annan's peace plan but promised to defeat the "conspiracy" against it.
This video purports to show
What struck me is how close the opposition and Free Syrian Army and the government positions are. They were really about 1.5km apart from each other. I was with the FSA in their forward post in a place called Anadan. and we sort of climbed, not exactly to the roof because there were snipers, but we climbed to the sort of second storey and peered out through binoculars and we could see two tanks in the afternoon haze. There was a big military base ahead .
On the oft-raised issue of sectarianism, he said:
Bashar al-Assad i saying to his sort of core Alawite base this is almost like a Rwanda moment. You have to fight with the regime because otherwise the Sunnis will take over and kill you all and I think it's certainly true to a degree that the Alawi comunity has coalesced around this idea, that this has been a sort of existential struggle for them. Having said that I met a fascinating Alawite activist who joined the revolution from Latakia, which is in Assad's homeland. He said: 'Actually in Latakia half of the population there don't support the regime, they're against the regime.' There are a lot of Alawite activists who have opposed this regime and suffered for it so the picture is complex. The wider aspect of this is the Free Syrian Army ...is almost a sort of peasant army if you like, people from the countryside, people from the cities too, middle classes too but there is bourgeoise, people who have profited from the regime, who are happy with the status quo, who don't like the fighting, are not especially enamoured with the revolution. The picture is delicate but the overwhelming sense among most Syrians certainly, certainly 70 or 80% is they want this regime to go.
On the Syrian National Council's proposal for a transitional government, Luke said:
In Syria no one is really talking about post-Assad scenarios, no one is talking about what sort of transitional government there might be. I mean this is being done in Washington and other kind of Salons. Here it's more basic, people are trying to stay alive, people are fighting, dying ...the regime's still here, it hasn't gone. At the moment there's one great task that's uniting the opposition here and that's to bring down the army, to bring down Bashar al-Assad and I think until that happens it's sort of speculative. But having said that, a lot of people do say 'we want a civil government'. I mean they are really fed up with this idea that this is somehow an Islamist revolution that they are terrorists, that the opposition here are linked to al-Qaida. They say that that is just not true, it's nonsense. They want a civilian revolution as they put it and a civilian government but what shape that government might be at this stage, who knows.
The Syrian foreign minister, despite the ongoing violence. But Moualem has also insisted that Syria will defeat those plotting against it.
The idea of a managed transition of power in Syria is "an illusion," the Iranian foreign minister said in a press conference in Tehran today.
Ali Akbar Salehi said during a visit by his Syrian counterpart Walid al-Moualem.
Thinking naively and wrongly that if there is a power vacuum perhaps in Syria and if there is a transition of power in Syria, simply another government will come to power, that I think is just a dream ... It's an illusion. We have to look carefully at Syria and what's happening inside the country.
Below the line, :
Update from middle-class area of Aleppo. Constant shelling for the last 2 days of the poorer areas. I can hear the shells being fired. I can see the helicopters circling and firing in the same areas. We cannot open schools quick enough to take in the fleeing families. Thousands are sheltering in the parks. The Salaheddin area being shelled at the moment was home to a million people. Where are they supposed to go? No gas, no fuel, no petrol and now no bread. War against another country is bad enough but how can anyone bomb their own people?
The Local Coordination Committees activist group claims The Guardian cannot independently verify this report.
It has posted a it says is of three people killed by forces loyal to Bashar al-Assad in Aleppo's south-west neighborhood of Salaheddin.
There have been fierce clashes in al-Bab in the Aleppo countryside, according to the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
Violent clashes took place by the agricultural school in the city of al-Bab, the battles between the rebels and regime forces lasted for hours. It resulted in the takeover of the school by the armed rebel battalions, who also commandeered a tank, several 4x4 cars, and various weapons. No reports yet on the amount of casualties.
shows people crammed onto a tank captured from government forces and rebel fighters aboard other military vehicles they have commandeered.
The Guardian's Luke Harding, on the Aleppo frontline,
The prisoner identified himself as Dawish Dado, 33. He said he was a decorator in Aleppo, and was recruited two months ago to join the Shabiha as the regime's grip on the country began to unravel.
Asked if he killed anyone himself, Dado replied: "No." But he confirmed his Shabiha unit had looted many houses in Aleppo, robbed people, and probably raped women. "I didn't witness rape. But I heard talk about it in my unit," he said. What did they steal? "Private property. Pretty much everything we could lay our hands on," he indicated.
Welcome to Middle East Live. Clashes are reportedly continuing in Aleppo as government troops and rebels battle for control of the key city.
Here are the latest developments:
• Aleppo-based activist Mohammed Saeed says the shelling is most intense in the south-western neighborhoods of Salaheddin and Saif al-Dawla, some of the first areas seized by the rebels when they started last week a push to take over the city.The government said security agents were hunting down armed groups in Salaheddin.
• He writes:
Assad's strategy seems clear enough: to besiege the rebels inside Aleppo, as in Homs, and to shell them until they are crushed. The difference now, however, is that the FSA controls large chunks of the Syrian countryside, including the environs of Aleppo. And it believes it is winning. "They think they are besieging us. In fact we are besieging them," the commander Abu Ahmed said.
• Abdelbasset Sida, president of the SNC, said such a government would run the country between Assad's ousting and democratic elections. Most of its members would be drawn from the opposition, but some members of the current Assad government might also be included, he added. The SNC is an umbrella group for the Syrian opposition but it has suffered internal divisions as well as criticism from some outside who say it is not truly representative of the opposition.