File photo shows Syrian militants with sophisticated weapons
Mon Jan 28, 2013 1:58AM GMT
New pictures coming out of Syria show foreign-backed militants, carrying heavy weapons in the Syrian village of Kurnaz near the Turkish border, to use them against government forces.
The pictures show more than a dozen militants taking up positions to fire their sophisticated weapons. Syrian Army tanks, which are a few kilometers away, fire shells at the militants.
There's no independent report on how the militants have gained those particular weapons. But regional countries such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar as well as certain Western governments have for months been funding and arming the militants.
On Friday, a senior member of Saudi Arabia's monarchy said militants should be given sophisticated arms, including anti-aircraft weapons.
"What is needed are sophisticated, high-level weapons that can bring down planes, can take out tanks at a distance. This is not getting through," Prince Turki al-Faisal, a former intelligence chief and brother of the Saudi foreign minister, said at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
"I'm not in government so I don't have to be diplomatic. I assume we're sending weapons and if we were not sending weapons it would be terrible mistake on our part," Faisal said, adding that "You have to level the playing field…"
Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011. Many people, including large numbers of Army and security personnel, have been killed in the violence.
The Syrian government has said that the chaos is being orchestrated from outside the country, and that a very large number of the militants operating in the country are foreign nationals.