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Government aircraft bombed outer districts of Damascus
#1 Posted : Saturday, January 12, 2013 9:57:00 PM(UTC)
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MOSCOW/BEIRUT (Reuters) - Russia voiced support on Saturday for international peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi but insisted Syrian President Bashar http://www.nikefeeeruncheap.biz www.nikefeeeruncheap.biz al-Assad's exit cannot be a precondition for a deal to end the country's conflict. Some 60,000 Syrians have been killed during the 21-month-old revolt and world powers are divided over how to stop the escalating bloodshed. Government aircraft bombed outer districts of Damascus on Saturday after being grounded for a week by stormy weather, opposition activists in the capital said. A Russian Foreign Ministry statement following http://www.tiffanyforwomen.org/ tiffany for women talks on Friday in Geneva with the United States and Brahimi reiterated calls for an end to violence in Syria, but there was no sign of a breakthrough. Brahimi said the issue of Assad, who the United States, European powers and Gulf-led Arab states insist must step down to end the civil war, appeared to be a sticking point. Russia's Foreign Ministry said: "As before, we firmly uphold the thesis that questions about Syria's future must be decided by the Syrians themselves, without interference from outside or the imposition of prepared recipes for development." Russia has been Assad's most powerful international backer, joining with China to block three Western- and Arab-backed U.N. Security Council http://cheaptiffany.uk75.org/ cheap tiffany uk resolutions aimed to pressure him or push him from power. Assad can also rely on regional powerhouse Iran. Russia called for "a political transition process" based on an agreement by foreign powers last June. Brahimi, who is trying to build on that agreement, has met three times with senior Russian and U.S. diplomats since early December and met Assad in Damascus. Russia and the United States disagreed over what the June agreement meant for Assad, with Washington saying it sent a clear signal he must go and Russia contending it did not. Qatar on Saturday made a fresh call for an Arab force to end bloodshed in Syria if Brahimi's efforts fail, according to the Doha-based al http://www.cheaplouboutinforwomen.org/ www.cheaplouboutinforwomen.org Jazeera television. "It is not a question of intervention in Syria in favor of one party against the other, but rather a force to preserve security," Qatar's Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani, said in an al Jazeera broadcast. CONFLICT INTENSIFIES Moscow has been reluctant to endorse the "Arab Spring" popular revolts of the last two years, saying they have increased instability in the Middle East and created a risk of radical Islamists seizing power. Although Russia sells arms to Syria and rents one of its naval bases, the economic benefit of its support for Assad is minimal. Analysts say President Vladimir Putin wants to prevent the United States from using military force or support http://nikefreewomen.org nike free women from the U.N. Security Council to bring down governments it opposes. However, as rebels gain ground in the war, Russia has given indications it is preparing for Assad's possible exit, while continuing to insist he must not be forced out by foreign powers. Opposition activists say a military escalation and the hardship of winter have accelerated the death toll. Rebel forces have acquired more powerful anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons during attacks on Assad's military bases. Assad's forces have employed increasing amounts of military hardware including Scud-type ballistic missiles in the past two months. New York-based Human Rights Watch said they had also used incendiary cluster bombs that are banned by most nations. STALEMATE IN CITIES The weeklong respite from aerial strikes has been marred by snow and thunderstorms that affected millions displaced by the conflict, which has now reached every region of Syria. On Saturday, the skies were clear and jets and cheap nike free cheap nike free women nike free running helicopters fired missiles and dropped bombs on a line of towns to the east of Damascus, where rebels have pushed out Assad's ground forces, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. The British-based group, which is linked to the opposition, said it had no immediate information on casualties from the strikes on districts including Maleiha and farmland areas. Rebels control large swathes of rural land around Syria but are stuck in a stalemate with Assad's forces in cities, where the army has reinforced positions. State TV said government forces had repelled an attack by terrorists - a term it uses for the armed opposition - on Aleppo's international airport, now used as a helicopter base. Reuters cannot independently confirm reports due to severe reporting restrictions imposed by the Syrian authorities and security constraints. On Friday, rebels seized control of one of Syria's largest helicopter bases, Taftanaz in Idlib province, their first capture of a military cheap louboutin for women cheap christian louboutin christian louboutin airfield. Eight-six people were killed on Friday, including 30 civilians, the Syrian Observatory said. (Writing by Oliver Holmes; Editing by Tom Pfeiffer and Doina Chiacu)Karma disco in Milan November 14, 2010 and Italy's former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi waving …more MILAN (Reuters) - The nightclub dancer who is the main witness in the sex trial of Italy's former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi is to testify on Monday, her lawyer said on Saturday. Karima El Mahroug, better known by her stage name "Ruby the Heartstealer", was due to testify in the Milan court in December but failed to show up, telling her lawyer she was on holiday in Mexico. "Karima will be present in the courtroom on Monday," her lawyer Paola Boccardi told Reuters, adding that Mahroug had returned to Italy on Friday. Berlusconi, 76, who is seeking a fifth term in government in a parliamentary election on February 24-25, is accused of paying Mahroug for sex Discount tiffany jewelry Cheap Tiffany Jewelry Tiffany jewelry when she was under 18, which is the minimum legal age for prostitution in Italy. The billionaire media mogul denies all charges and Mahroug, a Moroccan who is now 20, has said she never had sex with him. In December, a judge set February 4 as the date for the final hearing in the trial, making a verdict possible before the election. However, one of his Berlusconi's lawyers said he was considering asking for the trial to be suspended until after the election. A poll by the SWG company published on January 11 put the center-left about 10 points ahead of Berlusconi's center-right. The trial, in which dozens of aspiring showgirls have described so-called "Bunga Bunga" parties at Berlusconi's residences, is the most sensational of his legal cases and has received huge media attention in Italy and abroad. Berlusconi is also accused of abusing his powers when he was still prime minister to have Mahroug released from police custody when she was briefly held over theft allegations. Berlusconi could be sentenced to up to 15 Discount tiffany jewelry Cheap Tiffany Jewelry Tiffany jewelry years in prison, but he would not serve time unless he also lost the two appeals allowed by Italian law, usually a lengthy process. Berlusconi, who controls Italy's biggest private broadcaster Mediaset, was driven from office as prime minister in 2011 at the height of the financial crisis. His People of Freedom party backed the technocrat government of Mario Monti for a year before bringing it down by withdrawing its support last month. (Reporting By Stephen Jewkes, additional reporting by Manuela D'Alessandro; Editing by Jason Webb and Kevin Liffey)CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela's cancer-stricken president, Hugo Chavez, is recovering in Cuba and is not in a coma as some have rumored a month after surgery, his brother, Adan Chavez, said after a visit to Havana. The 58-year-old socialist leader has not been seen or heard from since his December 11 cancer surgery - his fourth such operation after the nike feee run cheap cheap nike free run cheap nike free disease was detected in his pelvic area in mid-2011 - leaving Venezuela in a state of suspense. But older brother Adan Chavez, who is governor of the family's home state of Barinas, said the president was improving daily, according to a news release on Saturday from his office. "The head of state continues to assimilate treatment well and his recovery is advancing daily," the statement read. "Information on social networks and in other places, saying the president is in a coma and his family are discussing the supposed disconnection of life support equipment, are totally false," it added. Chavez missed his own inauguration for a new, six-year term last week, although Venezuela's top court ruled that he remained in power and Vice nike free running nike free run Nike Free 3.0 President Nicolas Maduro could deputize until there was clarity over the president's condition. The rumors were stoked when Chavez did not send a message to Thursday's pro-government rally, the day he was supposed to be sworn in. Unlike past trips to Cuba for medical treatment, no images have been released of him. The saga has enormous stakes for Venezuela, a nation of 29 million people with the world's largest oil reserves, as well as for the wider region. Cuba and a handful of other leftist-ruled nations depend on Chavez's economic aid. Peruvian and Argentine Presidents Ollanta Humala and Cristina Fernandez, both friends of Chavez, visited Cuba this week. There was no sign either of them saw him. Finishing her visit on Saturday, Fernandez said it was "inappropriate" for her to talk about Chavez's condition, which was a matter for his family. "I ask you to show a lot of respect and solidarity," she told reporters in Havana. 'DEAD OR ALIVE?' Adan Chavez, a physicist by profession who has been a political mentor to his brother and is viewed by Venezuelans as a hard-liner, said Discount Tiffany Cheap Tiffany Tiffany Bangles foreign media were in league with local opposition activists to promote lies about the president. "We know this is part of a dirty war by the necrophilic opposition," he was quoted as saying in the news release. "We are sure that with the support of God, science and the people, our president will triumph in this new battle." Venezuela's opposition leaders are furious at what they see as a Cuban-inspired manipulation of the constitution by Maduro and other top "Chavista" figures aimed at preventing the naming of a caretaker president due to Chavez's absence. Should Chavez die or have to step down, a new election would be called and would likely pit Maduro against opposition leader Henrique Capriles, the 40-year-old governor of Miranda state, who lost to Chavez in last year's presidential election. He and other mainstream opposition leaders have criticized secrecy over Chavez's condition, but have taken a wait-and-see attitude, preferring Discount Tiffany Cheap Tiffany Tiffany Bangles to prepare behind the scenes for a possible new vote. There have been small protests by students, none numbering more than several hundred people. A handful of people were injured in Tachira state on Friday, local media said, when protesting students clashed with police. "Who knows if Chavez is alive or dead? They don't say clearly if he is breathing, if he can talk or not," 22-year-old university student Daniella Contreras said at a protest meeting in Caracas on Saturday. "They should send a medical committee to Havana to confirm if the president is still capable of governing." The government has been giving regular but terse updates on Chavez's condition, the latest being that he is struggling with a severe lung infection after the operation. The silence from the normally garrulous leader famous for his lengthy speeches has led many Venezuelans to conclude his 14-year rule is ending. Venezuela's most prominent female opposition activist, right-wing legislator Maria Corina Machado, told Saturday's gathering of about christian louboutin discount christian louboutin flats christian louboutin boots 400 protesters that the government was now illegitimate. "We are in the terrible situation of having to acknowledge there is today no government in Venezuela. Government is in Cuba, led by the Cubans, deciding what we do and what happens with our country," Machado said. Information Minister Ernesto Villegas urged Venezuelans to avoid being drawn into trouble. "An irresponsible minority are causing provocations to create a macabre show," he said. The Chavez years have been turbulent ones, particularly during a short coup against him and a national oil strike in 2002 and 2003, and many cheap nike free run nike free run nike free running Venezuelans are praying that whatever happens next, it will be non-violent. (Additional reporting by Girish Gupta in Caracas, Rosa Tania Valdes in Havana; Editing by Jackie Frank and Peter Cooney)

#2 Posted : Sunday, January 13, 2013 1:43:10 AM(UTC)
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