THE EXCHANGE OF ATTACKS: A rebel brigade in Damascus on Wednesday shells the Tishreen military hospital, known as a gathering place and a center for security units and shabiha in the Barzeh neighborhood.
Regime forces respond on the same day by shelling an electricity generation station in the nearby district of Jobar. In and around Damascus, the official Syrian agency SANA reports the army is leading a campaign to clear what it calls terrorists from East Ghouta as well as south of Damascus, reporting that “units of our courageous army killed and wounded several members of the terrorist ranks on Wednesday,” adding that “some of them were from Afghanistan, Iraq and Jordan.”
Meanwhile, the president of the Syrian political leadership in exile, Ahmed Jarba, and a delegation of senior Syrian Coalition members including FSA commander Brig. Gen. Salim Idriss concluded a visit to Paris on Wednesday during which they petitioned the French government for aid, specifically military assistance.
While the French government has repeatedly expressed its support for the opposition and the ouster of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a spokesman for the Foreign Ministry stopped short of endorsing a transfer of weapons, telling Al-Arabiya on Wednesday that “in the past we gave weapons to the rebels in Libya, then they were found along the African coast, especially the north of Mali where we ended up fighting the terrorists who had our own weapons.” On Thursday, Ahmad Jarba heads to New York for a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to discuss options for solving the Syrian crisis.