07172018Tue

Iran Focus

London, 18 Jan - The Druze, one of Syria’s most significant minority ethnic and religious groups, have remained on the sidelines of the contry’s seven year civil war. They have managed to keep their own survival their biggest priority, and have navigated a path that stayed between the regime and its op¬ponents.

The Druze have interests that appear to have gradually aligned with those of the regime and its allies, but remain uneasy with Iran, one of Damascus’s principal allies.

According to Syrian journalist Talal el- Atrache, there are three Druze areas in Syria: Sweida province in the south-east; Mount Hermon, in the south-west; and Jaramana and Sahnaya, which are two large suburbs south of Damascus. Pro-government militias made up mostly of Druze have waged battles when their territo¬ries were attacked.

Iran Focus

London, 27 Dec - At Damascus University journalism students were excited to see posters advertising: “Job Opportunity”. The posters were all over the campus, and offered 150,000 Syrian pounds or $360 (Dh1, 321) a month. This is a very good salary for journalism graduates, especially in a country where many news media channels have been closed down due to the war, now entering its seventh year.

Even news stations such as Al Arabiya and Al Jazeera have also been told they were not welcome, and have also closed up shop.

Iran Focus

London, 29 Nov - When Iranian chief of staff, General Mohammad Hossein Bagheri, visited Syria, last month, it was supposed to be a show of unity between the two violent regimes, to show what dictators could achieve if they worked together to crush their people, but it now appears that Bashar Assad is getting cold feet about the partnership.

During the meeting with his Syrian counterpart General Ali Abdullah Ayoub, Bagheri presented the Iranian Regime’s list of demands for helping the Syrian dictator to destroy his own country; namely a 50-year lease on a Mediterranean naval base, the establishment of Iranian air bases in Syria, phosphate mining concessions including for uranium, and more.

Iran Focus

London, 3 Dec - According to reports, a base or ammunition warehouse south of Damascus was hit in the early hours of December 2, by missiles from an airstrike.

This attack was conducted against a site that is well known, and foreign media has alleged that Israel is behind that strike. However, while Israel has taken credit for previous airstrikes on Syria, questions have arisen about the timing of the attack and what it was meant to achieve.

There have been warnings over this past year, that Iran hoped to construct permanent bases in Syria, laying the groundwork for the era after the defeat of ISIS.

Iran Focus

London, 20 Nov - The Iranian regime is known for its meddling in other countries in the Middle East. Its main aim is regional hegemony and it will stop at nothing to get it. One country in particular where Iran is extensively involved is Syria.

Since the beginning of the Syrian civil war, Iran has had some of its own military personnel there and it has funded, trained and armed numerous proxy groups and militias.

Iran’s involvement is particularly toxic because if it had not intervened, the civil war would have ended years ago. It has effectively fuelled the war. Syrian President Bashar al Assad has been propped up by Iran too.

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