Obama 'authorises spy flights over Syria

2014-08-25 22:51:33 | Al Muslim News
Obama 'authorises spy flights over Syria

 

President Barack Obama has authorised surveillance flights over Syria in order to gather intelligence on the Islamic State group, a senior US administration official said. Tuesday’s move could mark the first step towards US air strikes against targets inside Syria. The official, who spoke to the AP news agency, was not authorised to discuss Obama's decision by name and spoke only on condition of anonymity.The White House says Obama has not yet made a decision on whether to take military action inside Syria. The US is already launching air strikes against Islamic State targets in Iraq. The group announced last week that it had murdered an American journalist in Syria and was threatening more US hostages. The Reuters news agency had earlier reported that Washington was planning to send surveillance aircraft, including unmanned drones, to gain a clearer picture of the Islamic State fighters, who have seized territory in both Syria and Iraq. The Wall Street Journal said that US Central Command, which oversees American forces in the Middle East, had asked for additional surveillance planes to be used in Syria. The surveillance planes would provide information in addition to that already collected by US satellites and informants, the journal said. 'US dilemma' Joshua Landis, a prominent analyst on Syria, told Al Jazeera that advisers to Obama had been telling the president that the US would only be able to uproot the Islamic State group if they get involved in Syria. But the dilemma Obama was facing was the lack of partners in Syria, Landis said. Neither the Syrian regime, nor the fragmented moderate rebels could be seen as reliable allies. US officials, according to Reuters, have said privately that Washington has no plans to seek consent from the Damascus regime for any military flights. The Syrian government on Monday warned that Syria must be involved in co-ordinating any air strikes against the Islamic State group in Syria. In a news conference in Damascus, Foreign Minister Walid al- Muallem said his country was ready to work with the international community- including its rivals, the US and UK, - to battle against "terrorists". "Syria is ready for co-operation and co-ordination at the regional and international level to fight terrorism and implement UN Security Council resolution 2170," Muallem said. The UN Security Council passed a rare unanimous resolution on August 15 intended to weaken armed groups in Iraq and Syria by choking off their funding and stemming the flow of foreign fighters. The resolution targeted both the Islamic State group and al-Nusra Front, which is al-Qaeda's Syrian affiliate. Syria's government considers not only these two groups, but all those fighting to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad to be "terrorists"..

Tags: #

Latest News

What to Next

Russian foreign minister says US ready to continue talks

MOSCOW: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Sunday he believed his US colleagues were ready to continue dialogue with Moscow on complex iss... More

BJP keen to amend law on permanent residence in held Kashmir

NEW DELHI: Away from the attention that Article 370 attracts, some members and supporters of the Bha­ratiya Janata Party (BJP) are steadily pushin... More

North Korea defiant after new sanctions, rejects talks

SEOUL (AFP):North Korea on Monday angrily insisted tough new United Nations sanctions would not stop it from developing its nuclear arsenal, and warne... More

Does Trump worry you? US Muslims say yes : Survey

Survey finds Muslims feel out of place in society, displeased with their president, and are targets of discrimination. The early days of Donald Tru... More

DEATH TO ISIS:Thousands flood streets in furious protest to condemn terror group

Thousands of protesters chanted slogans against the militant Islamic State group Wednesday as they carried the coffins of victims of an attack targeti... More

China says restrained in face of India

BEIJING: China accused India on Wednesday of “concocting” excuses over the illegal entry of the South Asian nation’s military into C... More

COAS, Afghan envoy discuss border issues

ISLAMABAD: Army Chief Gen Qamar Bajwa met Afghanistan’s ambassador Dr Omar Zakhilwal on Wednesday for continuing discussions on normalisation of... More

Apple removes VPN services from Chinese app store

BEIJING: Apple has removed software allowing internet users to skirt China’s “Great Firewall” from its app store in the country, the... More

IS claims attack on Iraq embassy in Kabul

A suicide bomber blew himself up outside the Iraqi embassy in Kabul on Monday and militants breached the compound in a complex hours-long attack claim... More

Saudi-led bloc opens emergency routes to Qatari planes

DUBAI: Four Arab states that have cut diplomatic and transport ties with Qatar said on Monday that they have opened up air routes that Qatari planes c... More

83