Syria’s Assad attends holiday prayers at Damascus mosque

Syrian President Bashar Assad, fourth from left, prays on the first day of Eid Al-Adha at Al-Rawda mosque, in Damascus, Syria, Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018. (Syrian Presidency Facebook page via AP)
Updated 21 August 2018

Syria’s Assad attends holiday prayers at Damascus mosque

  • Syrian President Bashar Assad attends prayers for Eid Al-Adha in Damascus
  • It’s the first Eid Al-Adha since Syrian troops, backed by Russia, recaptured suburbs of Damascus

DAMASCUS, Syria: Syrian President Bashar Assad has attended prayers for the Muslim holiday of Eid Al-Adha in Damascus, the seat of his power.
State-run television showed Assad saluting worshippers as he arrived Tuesday at the Al-Rawda mosque and various footage of him praying and talking to people following prayers.
It’s the first Eid Al-Adha since Syrian troops, backed by Russia, recaptured suburbs of Damascus earlier this year and areas in southern Syria previously held by rebels.
In recent years, Assad has often traveled outside Damascus to towns and villages recaptured from rebels or Islamic State fighters to attend holiday prayers there.
With crucial military support from allies Russia and Iran, Assad’s troops have recaptured most rebel strongholds across the country. The northern province of Idlib is the last major remaining opposition bastion.


Sudan calls on UN to urge Ethiopia, Egypt not to take unilateral measures on Renaissance Dam

Updated 31 min 14 sec ago

Sudan calls on UN to urge Ethiopia, Egypt not to take unilateral measures on Renaissance Dam

  • Sudan is arranging to continue its bilateral meetings with the Egyptian and Ethiopian ministers to start negotiations

DUBAI: Sudan called on the United Nations Security Council to urge Ethiopia and Egypt to refrain from taking any unilateral measures regarding the Renaissance Dam, the state news agency SUNA reported on Wednesday. 
The Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources, Yasser Abbas, said the memorandum submitted by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Asma Abdalla, to the Security Council was a statement of “Sudan’s inherent right to this important file.” 
Abbas said the letter asked the Security Council to urge all parties to refrain from taking any unilateral measures that may affect regional and international peace and security.
He said Sudan was arranging to continue its bilateral meetings with the Egyptian and Ethiopian ministers to start negotiations on the Renaissance Dam, which has been stalled since last February.
He said the video conference meetings would be held with each delegation separately. 
In the letter sent to the Security Council, Abdalla said Sudan was keen to resume the tripartite Renaissance Dam negotiations with Egypt and Ethiopia.
Abdalla, who became Sudan’s first female Minister of Foreign Affairs last year in the transitional cabinet of Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, said her country was ready “to reach a comprehensive and satisfactory settlement.”