— Haaretz.com (@haaretzcom) January 26, 2015
By ANAV SILVERMAN
Tazpit News Agency
The IDF targeted several Syrian army positions that aided and abetted the attack against IDF soldiers on Tuesday according to the official IDF blog. The IDF targeted a Syrian army training facility, military command posts, and artillery batteries, retaliating with artillery fire directed at Syrian military targets.
On Tuesday an explosive device was detonated against IDF soldiers underneath their patrol jeep as in the northern Golan Heights. The soldiers had parked their jeep and were outside of the vehicle when the explosion was set off, causing the injury of four soldiers, wounding one of them severely. Before the explosion took place, the IDF identified suspicious movement on the border.
The wounded soldiers were hospitalized in Rambam Hospital in Haifa.
The IDF said that the Syrian targets had enabled the attack on the Israeli jeep on Tuesday. Lieutenant Colonel Peter Lerner, IDF Spokesman stated that “the attack against IDF troops today is an unacceptable escalation of violence from Syria. We will not tolerate this threat against Israeli civilians or troops, we will fulfill our mission, prevent, protect and defend against hostilities from Syria.”
Israeli Minister of Defense Moshe Ya’alon said that Israel viewed Syrian President Bashar Assad responsible for what happens in his country.
“If he [Assad] continues to cooperate with terrorists who seek to harm Israel, he will continue to pay a heavy price that he will regret,” Ya’alon stated on Wednesday.
Israel informed the United Nations Disengagement Observor Force (UNDOF) of the incident, which it considers a grave violation. This was the latest in a series of similar incidents that have taken place on Israel’s northern border.
Last Friday an explosive device was activated against IDF soldiers patrolling the Israel-Lebanon border, injuring no one. Earlier in the month, on March 5, two Hezbollah-affiliated terrorists were caught attempting to plant an explosive device near the Israel-Syria border in the northern Golan Heights. IDF forces responded immediately to the suspects and hits were identified.
Three years into the revolt against his rule, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is in a stronger position than ever before to quell the rebellion against his rule by Syrians who rose up to challenge his hold on power, first with peaceful protests and later with arms.
UNITED NATIONS (TRNS) – Actions taken by the Assad government to complicate the U.N.’s provision of urgent humanitarian aid to Palestinian refugees in a Damascus suburb may constitute a violation of international law, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said Friday.
The site in question is the Yarmouk camp in south-west Damascus, where 18,000 Palestinian refugees are described as being in “extremely desperate” need of food.
The UN is aware of “a number of deaths from starvation, as well as from the consumption of rotten food” having occurred in the camp.
A feature published by the English newspaper The Independent details conditions with the Yarmouk camp, describing the near-daily deaths of women by sniper fire while foraging for food in nearby fields and the suspected death of 50 camp residents due to starvation since October.
Although Pillay’s remarks steered clear of directly indicting Syrian President Assad for thwarting aid deliveries, she did say that “government forces and affiliated militias appear to be imposing collective punishment on the civilians of Yarmouk” through such methods as erecting a “succession of checkpoints” into the camp and requiring humanitarian convoys to traverse active conflict areas to reach the site.
A bulldozer clearing the way for a UN convoy to enter the camp this week was hit by gunfire before reaching Yarmouk,forcing it to turn back without delivering food rations for 6,000 people and 10,000 doses of polio vaccine.
“Intentionally directing attacks against personnel, installations, material, units or vehicles involved in a humanitarian assistance is a war crime under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court,” Pillay said.
UN human rights chef Navi Pillay says evidence has been uncovered in Syria that implicates President Bashar al-Assad and members of his entourage, in war crimes and crimes against humanity. And it points toward, “the highest level of government,” she says.
He accepted some blame for the state of his nation. But also hinted that some of what the government may be responsible for was the result of individual decisions. In an interview with Germany’s Der Speigel, Syrian President Assad said much of what’s going bad in his nation is the fault of the rebels, people in the government and himself. The first time he’s accepted any responsibility.
At the same time, Secretary of State Kerry, whose tone toward the Syrian government hasn’t been exactly friendly, is now giving Assad and company credit for complying with UN chemical weapons inspectors.
The chemical weapons he has in his arsenal are there to deter Israel. That’s what Syria President Assad is claiming. Weapons that he will turn over after some were allegedly used against his own citizens in the civil war that grips his nation. But Assad says, he’s not worried. He says he has new and improved weaponry to use – if necessary – against Israel.