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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, 11 Dec - An international security conference has reaffirmed the importance of tackling the Iran-backed Houthis in Yemen and all other Iranian forces who are supporting terrorism and destabilising the Middle East.

The Manama Dialogue 2017, held in Bahrain this weekend, brought together security and military experts to discuss the joint threats of extremism and terrorism.

Bahrain's Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa explained that the stability and security of the region faced many challenges, especially with the support that terrorists receive from Iran.

Iran Focus

London, 20 Dec - The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has trained a proxy Shiite militia from Pakistan to help Iran prop up the Assad dictatorship in Syria.

The Zainebiyoun brigade is largely made up of fighters from the Hazaras ethnic group or the areas of Parachinar and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. Estimates of their numbers could be as high as 1000.

Iran is targeting poor and, disadvantaged Shia Muslims in Pakistan, who are frequently attacked by terrorist groups (who can trace their support to the Iranian Regime), for recruitment into their militias. They promise a better and safer life with protection from the terrorists, much like how the Mob can promise that you won’t be taken out by any of their guys, so long as you work for them.

Iran Focus

London, 7 Dec - An Iranian-backed militia in Iraq has threatened to attack American forces in the country over Donald Trump’s decision to officially recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move the US embassy there from Tel Aviv.

Al-Nojaba militia chief Akram al-Kaabi said in a statement: "The decision by Trump on Al-Quds [Jerusalem] makes it legitimate to strike the American forces in Iraq."

The number of US troops in Iraq- who are fighting ISIS- varies between 5,000 and 9,000 depending on which figures you use.

There are roughly 1,500 fighters in this group, which was established in 2013 and is supported by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).

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