The arrival of ISIS in Syria's capital threatens Syria's government and brings the group closer to some of the region's last stable countries.» Read More
DAMASCUS, Oct 11- Syria said on Thursday a Damascus- bound plane forced to land in Ankara by Turkish fighter jets while en route from Moscow had been carrying legitimate cargo. "The plane was not carrying any illegal material," Ghaida Abdulatif, head of Syrian Arab Airlines, told reporters in Damascus. "
BEIRUT, Oct 11- Syria's transport minister accused Turkey on Thursday of "air piracy" after Turkish fighter planes forced down a Syrian passenger jet flying from Russia to Damascus, Lebanon's al-Manar Television reported. The channel quoted minister Mahoumd Said as saying the move amounted to "air piracy which contradicts civil aviation treaties."
*Southerners: unity a failure, we can handle al Qaeda ourselves. Secessionists in the south, Houthi Islamist tribal rebels in the north and al Qaeda militants all benefited from the popular upheaval in the Arabian Peninsula country that ousted veteran strongman president Ali Abdullah Saleh in February.
*Russia and Iran will not give up on Assad for now. Posted on the Facebook page of President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, it shows the first lady Asma, dressed in jeans and a t-shirt, accompanying her daughter and three sons on their first day back at school. Russia and Iran continue to back Damascus.
BEIRUT-- In Syria's cities and towns, entire blocks of apartment buildings have been shattered, their top floors reduced to pancaked slabs of concrete. Although there are some pockets of Syria that have been relatively shielded from the conflict, the destruction in most of the country's major cities is staggering.
BRUSSELS, Oct 9- NATO has plans in place to defend Turkey against attack from Syria, and will aim to provide assistance if Ankara asks for it, senior officials said on Tuesday. NATO ambassadors threw their support behind Turkey in an emergency meeting last week after Syrian shells struck a border town in Turkey killing five civilians.
BEIRUT-- An official said Tuesday that an employee of Lebanon's national airline MEA was fired after a passenger complained in a social media campaign that the worker humiliated travelers from the Philippines at the Beirut airport and told them over the loudspeaker, "Filipino people, stop talking."
*Fifteen firms, consortium bid for Cyprus offshore blocks. NICOSIA, Oct 9- Cyprus is close to short-listing companies bidding for offshore oil and gas contracts in the energy-rich east Mediterranean, officials said on Tuesday.
BRUSSELS, Oct 9- The head of NATO said on Tuesday that the 28- member military alliance had plans in place to defend Turkey against attack from Syria if necessary, but that he hoped the two countries would find a way to stop tensions escalating.
WASHINGTON-- Mitt Romney solely blamed President Barack Obama on Monday for potential defense cuts that Republicans in Congress worked out with the White House and Democrats and left the misimpression that Obama has ignored free trade initiatives.
DUBAI, Oct 7- Arqaam Capital, a Dubai- based emerging market investment bank, has agreed to buy a financial services firm in Libya to tap into economic growth as the country rebuilds after its civil war.
BEIRUT-- A Hezbollah weapons depot exploded in eastern Lebanon on Wednesday, killing three members of the Shiite militant group, according to a report on its TV station. The report on al-Manar said Hezbollah kept old ammunition and shells left over from battles with Israel in the building near the city of Baalbek.
There were twice as many restaurant openings than closings in New York over the past year and diners still eat out three times per week-- the same number as in each of the past three years, according to the survey of 44,306 people, which will be released on Wednesday.
BEIRUT-- At least three explosions ripped through a house in a Hezbollah stronghold in eastern Lebanon on Wednesday, killing two people and wounding two others, a senior Lebanese security official said. Soldiers and Hezbollah members cordoned off the area, blocking access to journalists.
BEIRUT-- A senior Lebanese security official says at least three explosions have ripped through a house in a Hezbollah stronghold in eastern Lebanon. The official says the cause of Wednesday's blasts near the city of Baalbek was not immediately clear, and that there were no reports of any casualties. Baalbek is located in the Bekaa Valley in eastern Lebanon.
LONDON/ MILAN, Oct 3- Offshore natural gas could dramatically change Greece's fortunes, should early estimates of $600 billion worth of reserves be confirmed, according to a study presented to Prime Minister Antonis Samaras in June and seen by Reuters.
There were twice as many restaurant openings than closings in New York over the past year and d iners still eat out three times per week-- the same number as in each of the past three years, a cc ording to the survey of 44,306 people, which will be released on Wednesday.
BEIRUT-- An American freelance journalist who has been missing in Syria since mid-August has been shown in a video clip posted online, blindfolded and saying "Oh, Jesus" in a frightened voice in the custody of armed men. Tice, a 31- year-old former Marine, had been reporting on Syria's civil war for The Washington Post, McClatchy Newspapers and others.
*He mentions Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, US, France, Libya.