FROM SCRATCH NEWSWIRE

SCAVENGING THE INTERNET

US TROOPS ENTER SYRIA, KILL 8 CIVILIANS

Posted by Gilmour Poincaree on October 28, 2008

Number 3255 – Tue, Oct 28, 2008 – Aban 07 1387- Shavval 28 1429

American helicopter-borne troops from Iraq launched an assault on Sunday on a building in a Syrian A survivor of the US military attack on the Syrian village of Al-Sukkiraya on Oct. 26border village, killing eight civilians, official Syrian media reported.
“Four American helicopters violated Syrian airspace around 16:45 local time (1345 GMT) on Sunday. They penetrated eight kilometers (into Syria,“ official Syrian media said, AFP reported.
“American soldiers“ who had emerged from helicopters “attacked a civilian building under construction and fired at workmen inside, causing eight deaths,“ reports said. SANA named the dead and said they were a father and his four children, a couple and another man.
“The helicopters then left Syrian territory towards Iraqi territory,“ it said.
The news agency said one person was also wounded in the attack on the village of Al-Sukkiraya, around 550 kilometers northeast of the capital in the Abu Kamal area.
Earlier, the private television channel Al-Dunia said nine civilians had been killed in the attack. The raid appears to have been the first of its type into Syrian territory.
A US military official in Washington confirmed Sunday that special forces had conducted a raid in Syria that targeted the network of Al-Qaeda-linked foreign fighters moving through Syria into Iraq.
“We are taking matters into our own hands,“ the official told The Associated Press, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the political sensitivity of cross-border raids.

Envoys Summoned

Syria summoned the US and Iraqi envoys to Damascus to protest against what it called a US military attack and to demand that Iraq prevent US forces from “launching aggression against Syria“ from its territory, official media said.
“Syria condemns and denounces this act of aggression and US forces will bear the responsibility for any consequences,“ SANA quoted an unidentified official as saying.
“Syria also demands that the Iraqi government accept its responsibilities and launch an immediate inquiry following this dangerous violation and forbids the use of Iraqi territory to launch attacks on Syria,“ it said. “We are in the process of investigating this“ reported attack, Sergeant Brooke Murphy, a US military spokeswoman, told AFP in Baghdad.
In Washington, a Pentagon spokesman declined to comment. Commander Darryn James told AFP that there was “no response“ from the US Department of Defense about the Syrian reports.
The Iraqi Defense Ministry also refused to comment, on the grounds the incident took place inside Syria.
Syria’s first ambassador to Iraq in 26 years took up his post in Baghdad this month, marking the official end of more than two decades of icy relations.

In Desperation

Syria called the raid a “serious aggression,“ and its Foreign Ministry summoned the charges d’affaires Syrians mourn next the bodies of their relatives who were killed in a deadly US military attack on the village of Sukkiraya, on the Syria-Iraq border, Oct. 27of the United States and Iraq in protest.
Syrian parliament member Suleiman Hadad called the raid “a last-ditch hit by the defeated and desperate“ Bush administration, which is trying to “restore some of its lost dignity in the region.“
Government newspapers also published scathing criticisms in Monday’s editions. Tishrin splashed its front pages with a headline denouncing the raid as a “US war crime,“ while the Al-Baath newspaper described the attack in an editorial as a “stunning, shocking and unprecedented adventure.“
“Even while it’s preparing itself to leave the White House, the Bush administration seems determined to demonstrate its foolishness, and this is a dangerous indication of political madness and stupid arrogance,“ Al-Baath said.
Iran also condemned the attack, while Iraqi officials said they hoped the raid would not harm their relations with Syria.
“We are trying to contain the fallout from the incident,“ Iraqi Foreign Ministry undersecretary Labib Abbawi said. “It is regrettable and we are sorry it happened.“
Some Iraqi officials warned that the US military raid into Syria could be used by opponents of a security pact under negotiation with the United States.
“Now neighboring countries have a good reason to be concerned about the continued US presence in Iraq,“ prominent Kurdish politician Mahmoud Othman said.

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PUBLISHED BY ‘IRAN DAILY’

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