Syria’s Assad warns West against intervention

Syria cảnh báo các nước phương Tây đừng can thiệp

Latest update: 30/10/2011 

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (pictured) has warned Western powers that they risk causing an “earthquake” in the region if they intervene in Syria as demonstrators call for protection from a crackdown that has killed some 3,000 people since March.

By Katharyn GILLAM (video)

REUTERS – Western powers risk causing (sẽ không tránh được rủi ro gây ra ) an "earthquake" across the Middle East if they intervene in (can thiệp vào)Syria, President Bashar al-Assad said, after protesters called for foreign protection from a crackdown (cuộc đàn áp) in which 3,000 people have been killed.

Assad’s warning (cảnh báo) came ahead of (đưa ra ngay trước) Syrian government talks on Sunday with the Arab League (liên đoàn Ả Rập) aimed at starting a dialogue between the government and opposition (phe đối lập) and ending violence which has escalated (leo thang) across (khắp) Syria in recent days.

French FM denounces ‘crimes against humanity’

AP – France’s foreign minister says Syria’s deadly crackdown on protesters amounts to (gây ra results in) a crime against humanity. Alain Juppe also called on Russia on Wednesday to back sanctions against (cấm vận chống) Syria at the United Nations.
But after talks with Russia’s foreign and defense ministers, Juppe said that Moscow continues to disagree with France on the approach toward (giải pháp cho vấn đề) Syria. Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov called on Syria’s opposition to engage in a dialogue with (tham gia đối thoại với) the authorities (nhà cầm quyền, ► the government).

Activists (các nhà hoạt động nhân quyền) said Syrian forces killed more than 50 civilians in the last 48 hours and one activist group said suspected army deserters (binh lính đào ngũ) killed 30 soldiers in clashes (xung đột) in the city of Homs and in an ambush (phục kích) in the northern province of Idlib on Saturday.

Assad’s suppression (sự đàn áp) of the seven-month uprising has drawn criticism (gây ra sự chỉ trích) from the United Nations and Arab League (Liên đoàn Ả Rập). Western governments have called on (kêu gọi) him to step down (rút lui, rời bỏ chức vụ) and imposed sanctions on Syrian oil exports and state businesses (các doanh nghiệp nhà nước).

Western countries "are going to ratchet up (gia tăng) the pressure, definitely", Assad told Britain’s Sunday Telegraph newspaper.

"But Syria is different in every respect (về mọi phương diện) from Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen. The history is different. The politics is different."

"Syria is the hub (trung tâm, nơi hội tụ) now in this region. It is the fault line (vết phay, đường đứt gãy), and if you play with (đùa, khiêu khích) the ground you will cause an earthquake."

Western stance

NATO military intervention in Libya played a decisive role in toppling (làm lật đổ) Muammar Gaddafi, the third Arab leader to be overthrown after the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt.

Western nations have shown no appetite (tỏ ra không mặn mòi) to repeat their Libyan operation (chiến dịch) in Syria, but demonstrators are increasingly calling for a "no-fly zone" (vùng cấm bay) over their country.

"Do you want to see another Afghanistan, or tens of Afghanistans?" Assad said. "Any problem in Syria will burn the whole region. If the plan is to divide Syria, that is to divide the whole region."

Are sanctions the key to crippling (làm què quặt, làm thiệt hại)  Assad’s regime?

Since the start of protests in March, Syrian authorities have blamed the violence on foreign-backed gunmen (các tay súng được nước ngoài bảo trợ) and religious extremists (thành phần cực đoan) they say (mà theo họ) have killed 1,100 soldiers and police.

Syria has barred (ngăn chặn) most international media (báo đài nước ngoài), making it hard to verify accounts (xác minh các câu chuyện) from activists and authorities.

But the resilience (sự kiên cường) of the protesters, the determination of authorities to crush the dissent (giới bất đồng chính kiến) and the emerging armed insurgency have combined to make Syria’s turmoil (cuộc xáo trộn) one of the most intractable (không thể kiểm soát được) confrontations of this year’s Arab uprisings (sự nổi dậy)

Assad, whose father put down an armed Muslim Brotherhood uprising in the city of Hama in 1982, killing many thousands, said the latest crisis was part of the same conflict.

"We’ve been fighting the Muslim Brotherhood since the 1950s and we are still fighting with them," he said.

Authorities had made "many mistakes" in the early part of the uprising, but he said the situation had now improved and that he had started implementing reform (thực hiện các cải cách) within a week of the troubles (rối ren, lộn xộn)erupting (nổ ra) in mid-March.

"The pace of (tốc độ, nhịp độ) reform is not too slow. The vision needs to be mature (chín chắn). It would take only 15 seconds to sign a law, but if it doesn’t fit your society, you’ll have division," he said.

Assad’s opponents say although he lifted emergency law (bỏ luật về tình trạng khẩn cấp) and gave citizenship to thousands of stateless (không có tổ quốc)  Kurds, his promises of reform ring hollow (nghe trống rỗng) while security forces kill protesters and arrest thousands of people. They also say protests are driven by (thôi thúc) a desire for (mong mỏi) greater freedoms, not by an Islamist agenda (chương trình).

Friday’s shooting of demonstrators prompted Arab ministers to issue their strongest call yet on Assad to end the killing of civilians (thường dân).

The Arab League’s committee on the Syrian crisis sent an "urgent message to the Syrian government expressing (bày tỏ) its severe discontent (sự bất bình) over the continued killing of Syrian civilians".

A source at (một nguồn tin từ) Syria’s Foreign Ministry, quoted by (được trích dẫn bởi) state media (truyền thông nhà nước), said the Arab League statement was "based on media lies" and urged the committee to "help restore stability in Syria instead of stirring sedition (kích động, khuấy động nổi loạn)".

An Arab League ministerial group is due to (sắp, expected to) meet Syrian officials on Sunday in Qatar to press for dialogue between the government and opposition.

Syria, a majority Sunni Muslim nation of 20 million people, is dominated by Assad’s minority Alawite sect, an offshoot (ngành, phân chi) of Shi’ite Islam.

Aware of potentially seismic geopolitical implications (các hệ lụy địa chính trị có thể gây chấn động) if Assad were to fall, leaders in the mostly Sunni Arab world have been cautious about criticising the Syrian president as they struggle with (đấu tranh, vật lộn với) domestic challenges (các thách thức) to their own rule.

Sunni ascendancy (uy thế, thanh thế) in Syria could affect Israel and shake up (làm lung lay, gây rung chuyển)  regional alliances. Assad strengthened ties (tăng cường các quan hệ) with Shi’ite Iran while also upholding his father’s policy of avoiding conflict with Israel on the occupied Golan Heights frontier.

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