Two British soldiers injured in Syria Daesh missile attack

The soldiers were wounded in an attack in Deir Ezzor. (AFP file photo)
Updated 06 January 2019

Two British soldiers injured in Syria Daesh missile attack

  • The two British soldiers were transported by helicopter to receive medical care: Rami Abdel

BEIRUT: Two British soldiers were wounded Saturday in eastern Syria by a missile fired by the Daesh group, an NGO said.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the pair were part of the the international anti-jihadist coalition, led by the United States.
“The two British soldiers were transported by helicopter to receive medical care,” the observatory’s director Rami Abdel told AFP.
A Kurdish fighter from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) died in the attack in the village of Al-Shaafa in Deir Ezzor province, one of the last pockets of territory still controlled by Daesh in the Euphrates River valley.
The SDF, a coalition dominated by Kurdish fighters, has spearheaded the fight against Daesh, supported by several Western countries including the United Kingdom.
The international alliance seized the key Daesh holdout of Hajjin in December after months of fighting that has seen the jihadists launch vicious counter-attacks.
Daesh, which once controlled swathes of Syria and Iraq, has been pounded by multiple offensives.
Since September, more than 1,000 jihadists have been killed in the fighting compared with just under 600 SDF members while 15,000 people have fled Hajjin, according to the Observatory.
Last month US president Donald Trump announced the withdrawal of around 2,000 soldiers from Syria, deployed to support the SDF, claiming Daesh had been defeated.
The Syrian war, which began in 2011, has caused more than 370,000 deaths and forced millions of people to flee their homes.


Troops halt Lebanese ‘revolution bus’ over security concerns

Lebanese anti-government protesters flash victory signs as they head to the south of Lebanon on a 'revolution' bus from central Beirut on November 16, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 17 November 2019

Troops halt Lebanese ‘revolution bus’ over security concerns

  • The protest convoy is aiming to reach Nabatieh and Tyre, two cities that have challenged Hezbollah and the Amal Movement in southern Lebanon during weeks of unrest

BEIRUT: A Lebanese “revolution bus” traveling from north to south to unite protesters was halted by troops outside the city of Sidon on Saturday.
The army set up a road block to prevent the bus and a large protest convoy entering Sidon, the third-largest city in the country.
Local media said that the decision had been made to defuse tensions in the area following widespread protests.
Lebanese troops blocked the Beirut-South highway at the Jiyeh-Rumailah checkpoint over “security concerns,” a military source told Arab News.
“Some people in Sidon objected to the crossing of the bus and we feared that problems may take place,” the source added.
A protester in Ilya Square in Sidon said: “Those who do not want the bus to enter Sidon should simply leave the square because there are many who want to welcome the bus.”
The army allowed the bus to enter the town of Rumailah, 2 km from Sidon. “The bus will stop here after nightfall because of security fears and the risk of an accident,” the military source said.
The protest convoy is aiming to reach Nabatieh and Tyre, two cities that have challenged Hezbollah and the Amal Movement in southern Lebanon during weeks of unrest.
Activists said the protest bus “is spreading the idea of a peaceful revolution by unifying the people.”
“The pain is the same from the far north of Lebanon to the south and the only flag raised is the Lebanese flag,” one activist said.
Organizers of the protest convoy rejected claims that the cities of Sidon, Nabatieh and Tyre were reluctant to welcome the bus, and voiced their respect for the Lebanese army decision.

After leaving Akkar the bus passed through squares that witnessed protests in Tripoli, Batroun, Jbeil, Zouk Mosbeh, Jal El Dib and Beirut. Protesters chanted “Revolution” and lined the route of the convoy, turning it into a “procession of the revolution.”
The bus paused in Khalde, where the first victim of the protests, Alaa Abu Fakhr, was shot and killed a few days ago by a Lebanese soldier. The victim’s widow and family welcomed the convoy and protesters laid wreaths at the site of the shooting.
Activists’ tweets on Saturday claimed that life in Beirut’s southern suburbs is as difficult as in other areas of Lebanon.
“As a Shiite girl living in the heart of the southern suburbs, I deny that we are living well and not suffering. We are in a worse position than the rest of the regions,” said an activist who called herself Ruanovsky.
“No one is doing well,” said Wissam Abdallah. “The suburbs have external security and safety, but unfortunately there is a lot of corruption. There are forged car van plates, motorcycle mafia, Internet and satellite mafia, royalties mafia, and hashish and drugs mafia. Municipalities have to deal with these things as soon as possible.”