Syria

1:50pm

Thu April 5, 2012
Middle East

With A Dose Of Caution, Kurds Oppose Syrian Regime

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 9:38 pm

Kurds in Syria overwhelmingly oppose the current Syrian regime but have been hesitant to join in the fighting. Here, Kurds wave the Kurdish flag as they rally against the government in the northern city of Qamishli, Syria, on March 21.
STR AFP/Getty Images

When protesters took to the streets of Syria last year, one of those who joined in was Abu Azad — a pseudonym he uses to protect his safety.

A member of the Kurdish ethnic group, Abu Azad helped organize protests in Kurdish areas, calling for Syrian President Bashar Assad to step down. But Abu Azad recently found out he was wanted by Syrian authorities.

"They were chasing me and they want to kill me," he says.

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1:11pm

Wed April 4, 2012
The Two-Way

More Violence, As U.N. Mission Races Toward Damascus

The peace plan brokered by international envoy Kofi Annan and backed the United Nations has yet to curb the violence in Syria.

Reuters reports that even though a U.N. team of peacekeepers is scheduled to arrive in Damascus, today or tomorrow, opposition activists said government forces continued their attack. They said about 80 people have been killed since Tuesday.

Reuters adds:

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12:05pm

Mon April 2, 2012
Middle East

Syrian Exiles Seek To Spread Word On Internet Radio

Originally published on Mon April 2, 2012 3:12 pm

Protests in Syria have carried on despite the crackdown by the government's security forces. New Start Radio, an Internet radio station, has reported on events by speaking to citizen journalists around the country. Here, protesters take part in a March 2 demonstration in northern Syria.
Rodrigo Abd AP

We can't tell you where Hussam and Rania live, but we can tell you they used to live in Syria's capital, Damascus.

Hussam was a creative director at a small marketing company he founded with a friend. Rania was the morning host for a radio station owned by the cousin of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

Then came the protests all around Syria. Then came the phone call.

"The radio station called me, at home, and they said, 'Rania we have to say the truth,' " Rania says.

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11:55am

Mon April 2, 2012
The Two-Way

Annan: Syria Agrees To Pull Troops From Cities By April 10

Originally published on Mon April 2, 2012 12:00 pm

Bashar Ja'afari, Syria's Ambassador to the United Nations, points to reporters asking questions as he speaks to the media outside Security Council chambers on Monday.
Stan Honda AFP/Getty Images

Syria will abide by the international peace plan and remove its troops from cities by April 10, Kofi Annan, the U.N. envoy to the country, told the Security Council.

The AP reports:

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6:00am

Sat March 31, 2012
Middle East

Children Swept Up Into Syria's Violence

Originally published on Sat March 31, 2012 9:00 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.

The popular revolt in Syria against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad has been grinding on for over a year now. The United Nations says Assad's forces have killed more than 9,000 people during that time. The Syrian government in turn blames what it calls foreign-backed terrorists for the deaths of 3,000 soldiers and police. Now, the plight of Syria's children has captured attention.

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