World Bulletin/News Desk
Syria's navy fired live missiles from ships and helicopters over the weekend, state media said on Sunday, in an exercise aiming at showcasing its ability to "defend Syria's shores against any possible aggression".
Syrian television aired video of a variety of missiles being fired from launchers on land and from ships and showed the Syrian Defence Minister Dawud Abdallah Rahijia in attendance.
"Naval Forces conducted an operational live fire exercise on Saturday, using missiles launched from the sea and coast, helicopters and missile boats, simulating a scenario of repelling a sudden attack from the sea," Syrian news agency SANA said, adding manoeuvres would continue for several days.
Opposition figures have been calling for a no-fly zone and NATO strikes against Syrian forces, similar to those carried out in Libya last year which enabled rebel ground forces to end the rule of Muammar Gaddafi.
But while President Bashar al-Assad has faced sanctions and international condemnation over his crackdown on dissent which has left thousands dead, major Western and Arab powers have shied away from the idea of direct military action.
Turkey has reinforced its border and scrambled fighter aircraft several times since Syria shot down a Turkish reconnaissance jet on June 22 over what Damascus said were Syrian territorial waters in the Mediterranean. Ankara said the incident occurred in international air space.
More than 30 people were killed on Sunday during a government bombardment and clashes between Syrian forces and Free Syrian Army rebels fighting to oust Assad, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
Activists reported heavy shelling in residential areas of Deir al-Zor city and in Deraa province, the birthplace of the revolt near the Jordanian border.
Rami Abdelrahman, head of the Observatory, said that residents of al-Sharifa in the wider Deir al-Zor province said rebels had taken control of a tank looted in combat for the first time and were using it to attack army positions.
In recent weeks, rebels have become more and more brazen in their attacks, holding small areas of territory across the country and clashing with troops only a few miles from the presidential palace in Damascus.
The changes include "unequivocal clarifications regarding East Jerusalem being the capital of the State of Palestine, as it is an integral part of the occupied Palestinian territories."
Eleven people injured in Dijon, eastern France; 40-year-old assailant detained in psychiatric hospital.
The bill requires overseas NGOs to register with, and be approved by, authorities if they want to set up representative offices or operate temporarily
Princess Cristina, 49, and Urdangarin are among 17 people ordered to stand trial in the case involving his Noos Foundation charity
Cansuyu Association has opened up a kindergarten school for 135 Gazan orphans, providing a lifeline to the children afflicted by the war.
Her lawyers argued that the case was "frivolous" and their client was effectively being swept up in the public anger surrounding the café siege, in which she did not take part
Britain could be forced to pay Turkish workers full EU rights, paper reports
Anti-Islamic slogans and a swastika was painted on a wall of mosque that was being constructed.
Foreign Minister calls Kerry and says that they are against all forms of cyber attacks and cyber terrorism
"New chapter" between the U.S. and Cuba is closely monitored by the countries of the region, and experts argue an open relationship will help to solve human rights issues in Cuba and contribute economically to the region.
Zimbabwe's political analysts are in deep search for the reasons why the President is in such a hurry to make crucial decisions.
A substantial majority of Switzerland's population is in favor of a ban on burqa, a garment worn by Muslim women, in public areas, according to Swiss media.
If realized, the E1 plan, which aims to build new Jewish settlements on an area of 12,000 dunams, will link the Jewish settlements of Maale Adumim, Mishor Adumim and Kfar Adumim in the occupied West Bank to East Jerusalem
Demonstrators hit the streets in angry response, protesting against ruthless and aggressive police tactics.
Israeli army detain Palestinian at Tulkarm checkpoint.