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.
Former president sentenced to 20 years in jail after biased trial, says Human Rights Watch
On Friday, Antiquities Minister Mamdouh al-Damati said that over the past ten months, his country had recovered a total of 221 artifacts that had been previously smuggled to the US, Australia, Germany and Denmark.
The camp was used by the Houthi as a supply center for its operations.
Ali Abdullah Saleh, who still has influence over army units allied with the Houthi had welcomed this month's UNSC resolution as a way to "stop bloodshed" in Yemen.
A convoy of Iranian ships have moved away from Yemen, just days after the US deployed their warships to Yemen.
One man who suffered from liver and respiratory problems has died from water poisoining, with 586 hospitalised.
4 people have been reported dead and injured, with the number as yet unknown.
Fighters have pushed inside the town of Jisr al-Shughour for the first time in the four year war
On Tuesday, Saudi Arabia announced the end of a fierce month-long air campaign that had targeted positions belonging to the Houthi group in Yemen.
The Palestinian youth was holding two knives and tried to attack Israeli troops when he was shot and killed in the West Bank.
UN humanitarian chief Valerie Amos asks Security Council to consider ways to end violence in Syria.
With no new moves towards dialogue, the Saudi airstrikes against Houthis continue and fresh fighting reported in Aden and Marib.
Sanctions at top of agenda, says senior Iranian negotiator with current round of talks being held in Vienna.
The man responsible for the killing of two Saudi policemen earlier this month has said that he was obeying orders given to him by ISIL.
Saudi artillery have continued their attacks on the Saudi Jizan province on the border with Yemen