LATEST: Islamic State Claims Downing of Syrian Jet Fighter

For the second day in a row, opposition activists reported that more than 100 people have been killed across Syria.

The Local Coordination Committees said it had confirmed 104 deaths by the end of Monday. Of these, 35 martyrs were in Aleppo Province, 16 in Damascus and its suburbs, 16 in Homs Province, and 11 in Qunaitra Province.

The casualties may be even higher. Activists say at least 20 people were killed in Talbiseh in Homs Province by barrel bombs. Abdullah Hammad, a prominent activist for media and aid operations, is among the dead.

Sunday’s toll was 102 killed, with half of them from regime shelling and raids of villages in Hasakeh Province in eastern Syria.

The Syrian military is trying to reclaim territory held by the Islamic State. The Kurdish militia YPG is reportedly doing the same, bringing an on-the-ground alliance with regime forces — claims are circulating that the Syrian-Kurdish offensive executed at least 45 people in two villages near Tal Hamis.

The Violations Documentation Center has now confirmed 104,426 deaths since the start of the uprising in March 2011. Of these, 75,191 were of civilians.

The VDC does not count the number of Syrian troops and allied militias killed in the conflict.


Islamic State Claims Downing of Syrian Jet Fighter

The Islamic State claims it shot down a Syrian fighter jet carrying out an airstrike on Raqqa on Tuesday.

The warplane reportedly crashed into a house in city, controlled by the Islamic State since last year, causing deaths and injuries on the ground.

The regime jet is the first downed by the Islamic State.

Speaker of Syrian Parliament to US Politicians: Arming Insurgents Will Trigger Negative Chain Reaction

The Speaker of the Syrian Parliament, Mohammad Jihad al-Laham, has written senior US politicians to object to any supply of arms to insurgents: “Putting the weapons in the wrong hands is an irreversible action that will trigger a global, negative chain reaction.”

Al-Laham proposed “de-radicalisation” and intelligence collaboration, particularly with Turkey, to counter “terrorists”.

Regime Props Up Currency With Injection of US Dollars Into Market

The regime has propped up the Syrian pound with an injection of US dollars into the market, hoping to maintain an official rate of 185 Syrian Pounds to 1 dollar.

The Syrian Pound was 47:1 vs. the dollar at the start of the uprising in March 2011, but lost almost 80% of its value to reach more than 200:1 by June 2013.

Since then, the checking of the insurgency and financial support from Russia and Iran — including a $3.7 billion line of credit from Tehran — has prevented further decline.

In a curious claim of success, State news agency SANA ignores the past decline and declares, “The Syrian pound price improved for the second consecutive day to record 186 SYP against 1 USD in Damascus and other Syrian cities.”

A less optimistic note comes from Central Bank head Adib Mayaleh, “The CBS observes the market and will hunt manipulators during the coming days.”

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