6 December 2012, 13:30

Russian MFA says US realized terror threat in Syria

Russian MFA says US realized terror threat in Syria

By listing Syria’s Jabhat al Nusra as a terrorist group, the US has shown it has become aware of the surging terror threat to the region, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov has said.

“The fact the US has finally added Jabhat al Nusra to its list of international terrorist groups means it's come to realize what threat a surging terror activity poses to Syria,” Mr. Gatilov tweeted Thursday.

He said the major stumbling stone hid in drawing the line between terror groupings and Syrian opposition, adding their reluctance to sit down at the negotiating table was what united both warring parties.

Jabhat al Nusra is reportedly affiliated with al-Qaeda. In October 2012, the grouping claimed responsibility for a string of deadly blasts that struck downtown Aleppo killing dozens. 

17 US warships now off Syria 

The U.S. aircraft carrier "Dwight D Eisenhower" has arrived off the shores of Syria.

The multipurpose nuclear attack carrier the U.S.S. Dwight D Eisenhower is leading the naval assault group which has arrived in the eastern Mediterranean.

It is in close proximity to the coast of Syria. On board the ship are 70 fighter-bombers and a total 8,000 US servicemen.

The Dwight D Eisenhower joined the amphibious assault helicopter carrier Iwo Jima, which has been in the area for almost two weeks.

In all there are now 17 Amercian warships off the Syrian coast. 

Ankara knows where Syrian missiles are 

Ankara knows the "exact location" of hundreds of ground missiles belonging to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, local media cited the country’s Foreign Minister Davutoglu.

"Assad has about 700 missiles... Now we know the exact location of all of them, how they are stored and who holds them," Davutoglu was quoted as saying by the Sabah newspaper.

NATO agrees to send Patriot missiles to Turkey

The NATO Council, at the level of the Foreign Ministers of the member countries, approved the placement of Patriot Missile Batteries on the border dividing Turkey and Syria, said NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

Germany, the Netherlands and the U.S. expressed their willingness to send additional weapons.

According to the head of NATO, the organization is "making every effort" to speed up the transfer of the missiles to the area.

Rasmussen stressed that the complexes placed in Turkey "will not be used to support a no-fly zone or an offensive against Syria."

In the second half of November, Ankara approached the alliance with a request to expand its air defenses to protect against a possible attack by Syria.

Russia, Syria and Iran have criticised Turkey's request to the alliance to send the Patriots which can be used to intercept missiles.

Voice of Russia, IF, TASS

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