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Monday, January 7, 2013
Excerpts: 5,000 Hizbullah joined Assads forces. Morsi backs call for Assad war crimes trial. Israel to fortify Syrian border fence January 07, 2013

Excerpts: 5,000 Hizbullah joined Assad's forces. Morsi backs call for Assad
war crimes trial. Israel to fortify Syrian border fence January 07, 2013

+++SOURCE: Naharnet (Lebanon) 7 Jan.’13:Report” 5,000 Hizbullah Fighters
Joined Assad’s Forces in Damascus Fighting”
SUBJECT: 5,000 Hizbullah joined Assad’s forces
QUOTE:”{Hizbullah] is backed by the Syrian and Iranian regimes “

FULL TEXT:Some 5,000 Hizbullah members have been fighting alongside Syrian
regime troops against rebels in the restive suburbs of Damascus, the Saudi
al-Watan daily reported.

The newspaper quoted sources as saying that the fighters crossed the border
into Syria last month.

But they said that around 300 of them were killed in the fighting in the
past few days.

Battles have flared in areas around Damascus as rebels seeking to topple
President Bashar Assad try to push into the city itself.

The rebel advances in the suburbs threaten the government's grip on its seat
of power, prompting a punishing response from the military on rebel areas
skirting the capital.

Media reports have said several Hizbullah commanders and fighters have been
killed in Syria since the revolt that erupted with peaceful demonstrations
in March 2011 turned violent.

The party, which is backed by the Syrian and Iranian regimes, has long been
accused by the Syrian opposition of assisting Damascus in its crackdown on
the uprising — a claim Hizbullah repeatedly has denied

+++SOURCE: Naharnet (Lebanon) 7 Jan.’13:”(Egypt Pres.)Morsi Backs Call for
Assad War Crimes Trial”, Agence France Presse
SUBJECT: Morsi backs call for Assad war crimes trial

QUOTE: The U.S.State Department . . . . reiterated its call for Assad to
resign”

FULL TEXT:Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi told CNN Sunday[6 Jan.] he backs
Syrian calls for Bashar Assad to be tried for war crimes, and predicted
Assad's regime would fall in the country's bloody civil war.

"The Syrian people, through their revolution, and through the movement will,
when the bloodshed stops, move to a new stage where they will have an
independent parliament and the government of their choosing," Morsi said,
according to excerpts released by the network.

"And then they will decide what they want to do against those who committed
crimes against them. It is the Syrian people who decide."

Morsi spoke through a translator after being asked if he believed President
Assad should be tried by the Netherlands-based International Criminal Court.

"This phase is the phase of the people. Similar to what the Egyptian people
wanted, the Syrian people want it. And we support the Syrian people. And
they are going to win and they have the will to win," he said.

Over the past 21 months, the Assad regime's crackdown on anti-government
protests has ballooned into a bloody civil war that the United Nations says
has claimed more than 60,000 lives.

Earlier Sunday[6 Jan.], Assad offered a road map to end the conflict in a
rare speech -- his first in public in seven months -- in which he branded
the opposition "slaves" of the West and told foreign powers to stop backing
the rebels.

In Washington, the U.S. State Department described the road map as "detached
from reality" and reiterated its call for Assad to resign. The European
Union also called on him to step aside.

SourceAgence France Presse

+++SOURCE: Jordan Times 7 Jan.’13:”Israel to fortify Syeian border fence,
Agence France Presse
SUBJECT: Israel to fortify Syrian border fence
QUOTE:”Israel would erect a new security fence along its armistice line with
Syria in order to protect Israel from ‘infiltrations and terror’ “
FULL TEXT:
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday[6 Jan.]
said Israel would erect a new security fence along its armistice line with
Syria in order to protect Israel from “infiltrations and terror”.

Speaking at the beginning of the weekly Cabinet meeting, Netanyahu noted
that a new, fortified barrier along Israel’s border with Egypt, replacing an
older one, was nearly complete.

“We intend to stretch an identical fence, with some necessary changes due to
the different conditions, along the Golan Heights,” he said in remarks
relayed by his office, referring to the occupied Syrian plateau.

“We know that on the other side of our border with Syria today, the Syrian
army has backed off, and global jihad operatives have taken its place,” he
said.

“We must therefore protect this border from infiltrations and terror, as we
have successfully been doing along the Sinai border.”

Netanyahu added: “The question of chemical weapons here concerns us. We are
coordinating our intelligence and evaluations with the United States and
others, to be prepared for any scenario and possible developments.”

A security official told AFP that the new fence in the Golan Heights would
be along the outline of the old one. The official noted that Israel had
already completed some 10 kilometres of the new Golan fence, and had “about
60 kilometres to go.”

The official said he believed the work would be completed during 2013.

Israel captured the Golan from Syria during the 1967 war and annexed it in
1981, in a move never recognised by the international community.

==========
Sue Lerner - Associate, IMRA

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