Vehicles hit in Jordan air raid not Syria Army’s

Updated 15 May 2014

Vehicles hit in Jordan air raid not Syria Army’s

DAMASCUS: Vehicles hit by Jordanian airstrikes on the border on Wednesday did not belong to the Syrian Army, Syrian state media claimed, citing a military source.
“No military or armored vehicles belonging to the Syrian Army moved toward the Jordanian border, and so what was targeted by the Jordanian air force does not belong to the Syrian Army,” state television said in a breaking news alert.
The statement came after Jordan’s Army said air force fighter jets had destroyed a number of combat vehicles as they tried to enter the kingdom on Wednesday morning.
“Royal air force jets fighters today at 10:30 a.m. (0730 GMT) destroyed a number of vehicles that attempted to cross into Jordan from Syria,” the Jordanian army said in a statement.
“The camouflaged vehicles tried to enter from an area with rugged terrain.
“The fighter jets fired warning shots, but they were ignored, prompting them to destroy the vehicles. The army will not tolerate such actions,” said the statement.
A Jordanian security source said the targets appeared to have been Syrian rebels with machine guns mounted on civilian vehicles who were seeking refuge from fighting with government forces in southern Syria.
Photos taken from the air that appeared on several Jordanian news websites showed at least one civilian Chevrolet pickup damaged and another similar vehicle on fire in an unspecified desolate desert area.
No bodies appeared in the photos that a security source said had been released to the outlets by the military.
There was no identification on the vehicles. Such pickup are often used by smugglers who operate in the border area.


Lebanon not expecting new aid pledges at Paris meeting

Updated 10 December 2019

Lebanon not expecting new aid pledges at Paris meeting

  • The political impasse returned to square one on Sunday when a tentative agreement on a new PM unraveled
  • Lebanon has also been in a political impasse since Saad Al-Hariri quit as prime minister on Oct. 29

BEIRUT/PARIS: Lebanon does not expect new aid pledges at conference which France is hosting on Wednesday to press for the quick formation of a new government that can tackle an acute financial crisis.
French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian urged Lebanon to create a new government swiftly or risk the crisis worsening and threatening the country’s stability.
The economic crisis is the worst since the 1975-90 civil war: a liquidity crunch has led banks to enforce capital controls and the Lebanese pound to slump by one third.
Lebanon has also been in a political impasse since Saad Al-Hariri quit as prime minister on Oct. 29, prompted by protests against the ruling elite, with no agreement on a new government.
Nadim Munla, senior adviser to Hariri, who is running the government as caretaker, told Reuters the Paris meeting would probably signal a readiness to offer support once a government is formed that commits to reforms.
“They will recognize that there is a short-term problem and that if and when a government (is formed) that basically responds to the aspirations of people, most probably the international community will be ready to step in and provide support to Lebanon, or additional support,” he said.
“It is not a pledging conference.”
Lebanon won pledges of over $11 billion at a conference last year conditional on reforms that it has failed to implement. The economic crisis is rooted in years of corruption and waste that have generated one of the world’s heaviest public debt burdens.
The political impasse returned to square one on Sunday when a tentative agreement on a new prime minister unraveled.
Hariri is now seen as the only candidate for the post.
He has said he would only lead a cabinet of specialist ministers, believing this is the way to address the economic crisis, attract aid, and satisfy protesters who have been in the streets since Oct. 17 seeking the removal of a political class blamed for corruption and misrule.
But Hezbollah and its allies including President Michel Aoun say the government must include politicians.
“Let’s see the coming few days and if there will be an agreement among the political parties on a formation ... otherwise we might take longer,” Munla said. Hariri would be willing to have politicians in cabinet but they should not be “the regular known faces of previous governments.”