Russia has doubts about Assad’s ability to hold on

Russian officials, who have strenuously resisted U.S.-led efforts to push Syrian President Bashar Assad from power, are beginning to question whether the beleaguered leader can hang on, but say they have little influence over him as rebels take the fight to his country’s biggest cities.

Assad has many generals to fight Syrian rebels

The Syrian regime appears to have absorbed the shock it suffered in the heaviest blow against it yet in Syria’s 17-month-old upheaval — a bombing that killed four top aides. The blast raised opponents’ hopes President Bashar Assad could fall soon

Assad forces retake one Iraqi border crossing

Iraqi security officials and state TV say the Syrian military has retaken control of a border crossing from rebel fighters who seized it a day earlier. The officials say the rebels abandoned the border post Sunday near the Iraqi town of Rabiya before Syrian troops reclaimed it. All three officials spoke on condition of anonymity.

Arab League to hold emergency meeting in Qatar on Syria

The Arab League chief Nabil El-Arabi left Cairo on Saturday evening, heading to the Qatari capital Doha as Arab foreign ministers will hold an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in Syria on Sunday.

Russia’s 3 vetoes kill Annan’s Syria peace plan

Three vetoes of a UN Security Council resolution have left the major powers ready to bury Kofi Annan’s peace plan. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon stoutly insisted Saturday that he and special envoy Annan were still looking for ways to end a conflict that Syrian activists say has left more than 19,000 dead.

Fight for Aleppo has begun as death toll tops19000

Beirut, Lebanon – Syrian rebels have launched an offensive to “liberate” the country’s largest city of Aleppo, an opposition commander said Sunday, while in Damascus government troops backed by helicopter gunships wrested back control of rebel-held neighborhoods.

Assad prepares chemical revenge against Syrian rebels

BASHAR AL-ASSAD is set to unleash chemical weapons on his people, three top Syrian generals claimed yesterday. They fled to Turkey as Assad’s men desperately battled rebels pushing deep into the capital Damascus.

Syrian rebels capture third border post with Turkey

Syrian rebels captured a third border crossing with Turkey from President Bashar al-Assad’s forces on Sunday, rebel commanders and a Turkish official said.

Syrian rebel forces occupy second border post with Turkey

Syrian rebel forces occupied a second border post with Turkey on Sunday, three days after taking control of the frontier crossing of Bab al-Hawa, a Turkish diplomat told AFP.

600 British troops are on standby over Syria crisis

Defence chiefs have placed more than 600 British troops on standby as part of contingency plans to evacuate UK nationals from Lebanon, amid intelligence warnings that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad could fall within four weeks.