U.S. studying Syria no-fly zone near Jordan border - diplomats

ANKARA Fri Jun 14, 2013 9:35am BST

A view shows the site after bombs exploded close to a police post in the central Marjeh Square in Damascus June 11, 2013, in this handout photograph distributed by Syria's national news agency SANA. REUTERS/SANA/Handout via Reuters

A view shows the site after bombs exploded close to a police post in the central Marjeh Square in Damascus June 11, 2013, in this handout photograph distributed by Syria's national news agency SANA.

Credit: Reuters/SANA/Handout via Reuters

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ANKARA (Reuters) - The United States is studying setting up a limited no-fly zone in Syria close to the southern border with Jordan, two senior Western diplomats in Turkey said on Friday.

Their comments, confirmed by a third regional diplomat, came after Washington said it would step up military assistance to rebels battling President Bashar al-Assad in response to what it said was proof of chemical weapons use by Assad's forces.

"Washington is considering a no-fly zone to help Assad's opponents," one diplomat said. He said it would be limited "time-wise and area-wise, possibly near the Jordanian border", without giving details.

Syrian rebel commanders were due to meet Western and Turkish officials in Turkey on Friday to discuss military assistance to the rebels. Until now Washington has been deeply reluctant to send weapons, citing a risk that they would end up in the hands of radical Sunni Muslim brigades.

One of the diplomats said that setting up a no-fly zone might help Western efforts to monitor the recipients of any arms supplies, as well as helping train the anti-Assad fighters.

(Reporting by Parisa Hafezi; Editing by Dominic Evans)

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Comments (2)
Raymond.Vermont wrote:
Its what happens upon the ground that matters, and a no fly-zone is only likely to add further (cheaper to acquire) artillery, SPG and MBT sales imperatives, for the Al-Assad regimes state defence shopping list.

Which the Russian and eastern bloc arm sellers, shall be only too happy to source for the Syrian govt.

Jun 14, 2013 10:40am BST  --  Report as abuse
Raymond.Vermont wrote:
This is the same U.S govt that for every ten dollars it spends, comes up short by two dollars in its pocket every time?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjmi4GiC3_0

Jun 14, 2013 11:00am BST  --  Report as abuse
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