Wednesday 10 October 2012

Widening crisis in Syria

The officials said the idea of establishing a buffer zone between Syria and Jordan — which would be enforced by Jordanian forces on the Syrian side of the border and supported politically and perhaps logistically by the United States — had been discussed. But at this point the buffer is only a contingency.
The Obama administration has declined to intervene in the Syrian conflict beyond providing communications equipment and other nonlethal assistance to the rebels opposing the government of President Bashar al-Assad. But the outpost near Amman could play a broader role should American policy change. It is less than 35 miles from the Syrian border and is the closest American military presence to the conflict. 
NY Times: U.S. Military Is Sent to Jordan to Help With Crisis in Syria, October 9, 2012 
The comments by Nato secretary general Anders Fogh Rasmussen were the strongest show of support to Turkey since the firing began on Wednesday – though the solidarity is largely symbolic.
Nato member Turkey has sought backing in case it is attacked, but despite publicly supporting Syria's rebels Ankara isn't seeking direct intervention. And the alliance is thought to be reluctant to get involved militarily at a time when its main priority is the war in Afghanistan.
"Obviously Turkey can rely on Nato solidarity," Rasmussen said before a meeting of Nato defence ministers in Brussels. "We have all necessary plans in place to protect and defend Turkey if necessary." 
The Guardian: Nato backs Turkey in standoff with Syria, October 9, 2012

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