Arab Countries - Syria

Syrian Arab Republic - Al-Jumhuriyah Al-Arabiyah as Suriyah

The Country & People of Syria

Special Arab Files

This page contains links to sites in Syria and Syria related sites.
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Syria, officially Syrian Arab Republic, republic (1995 est. pop. 15,452,000), 71,467 sq mi (185,100 sq km), SW Asia, bordered by Israel, Lebanon, and the Mediterranean Sea (W), Turkey (N), Iraq (E), and Jordan (S). Principal cities include Damascus (the capital) and Aleppo. Most of Syria is occupied by the Syrian Desert, which is crossed by the Euphrates R. In the west are the Anti-Lebanon Mts., including Mt. Hermon (9,232 ft/2,814 m), Syria's highest point; in the southwest the fertile plain of Hawran extends from the Jabal al-Duruz Mts. to the Sea of Galilee. Major crops include wheat, fruit and vegetables, barley, sugar beets, cotton, and tobacco; poultry, cattle, and sheep are raised. The state plays a major role in the economy, and a large-scale industrialization program begun in the early 1960s has diversified the formerly agricultural economy. Petroleum production provides the leading export. Refined petroleum, textiles, processed foods, chemicals, and precision-engineered products are the chief manufactures. The Euphrates Dam supplies most of the nation's electric power. Most Syrians are Arabic-speaking Muslims, mainly Sunnite with significant Alawite and Druze minorities; there are also Kurds, Armenians, and Circassians. About 10% of the people are Christian, mainly Orthodox. Arabic is the official language.

History
Situated on trade and military routes between the Mediterranean and Mesopotamia, Syria (which historically included all of modern Syria and Lebanon, and parts of Israel, Jordan, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia) has always been an object of foreign conquest.
Settled (2100 BC) by the Amorites, a Semitic people from the Arabian peninsula, it fell to the Hittites (15th–13th cent BC), the Assyrians and Babylonians (11th–6th cent. BC), the Persians (6th–4th cent. BC), and the Greeks (333 BC).
Syria was Hellenized by the Seleucids and had fallen to Rome by 63 BC After a period of Byzantine rule (5th–7th cent. AD) Syria was conquered (633–40) by Muslim Arabs. Most Syrians converted to Islam, and Damascus, as the usual capital of the Umayyad caliph (661–750), became the center of the Islamic world. The area was later ruled by the Seljuk Turks, the Mongols, Saladin, and the Mamluks. Christians also came to Syria on the Crusades (11th–14th cent.).
It was part of the Ottoman Empire from 1516 until the end of World War I, and in 1920 France received a League of Nations mandate over the Levant States (roughly modern Syria and Lebanon).
During World War II Free French forces granted (1944) independence to Syria, but French troops did not leave until 1946. Syria joined with Egypt in the United Arab Republic in 1958, but withdrew in 1961. Independent Syria has been characterized by economic growth, political instability, and hostility toward Israel. In 1981 Israel exacerbated the situation by annexing the Golan Heights, captured from Syria in the Six-Day War (1967).
Syrian troops entered Lebanon in 1976, ostensibly to quell civil strife, and they continue to maintain a presence in that country.
During the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon, Syria suffered severe losses in combat with Israeli forces. The ruling Ba'ath party, which came to power in a 1963 coup, maintains a policy of socialism and Arab nationalism.
In the 1980s Syria experienced internal unrest, moved closer to the USSR, espoused hard-line Arab positions, and was linked to international terrorists. By 1990, however, the country was trying to improve relations with Western nations.
In 1991 Syria contributed 20,000 soldiers to the international coalition forces in the Persian Gulf War and in the same year it participated in initial peace talks with Israel. Although talks broke off in 1996, Syria appeared more willing to reopen negotiations following the installation of a Labor government in Israel in 1999.
Talks resumed in Dec. 1999, but after secret details concerning Syrian concessions were published (Jan. 2000) in Israel, Syria took a harder line and talks stalled.
After Assad died suddenly in June 2000, his son, Bashar al-Assad, who had been groomed to succeed his father since 1994, became president. The son was regarded as an advocate of a free-market economy and political change, but movement toward both has proceeded slowly and has at times been reversed or hindered. Syria strongly opposed the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq and was accused by U.S. government officials of supplying aid to Iraq and helping Iraqi officials to escape from U.S. forces. A new cabinet with a mandate to push reforms forward was appointed in Sept., 2003.
In October, Israel struck at what it called a terrorist training base in Syria in retaliation for suicide-bombing attacks in Israel; it was the first Israeli strike against Syrian territory in 20 years.
Simmering grievances among the nation’s Kurds erupted into rare antigovernment protests in NE Syria in Mar., 2004. In August and September Syria blatantly forced Lebanon to extend President Lahoud’s term, an act that was denounced by the UN Security Council.
The Feb., 2005, assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri, who had opposed Syrian interference in Lebanon, led to anti-Syrian demonstrations in Lebanon and increased international pressure on Syria. Syria subsequently agreed to withdraw from Lebanon, and by the end of Apr., 2005, the withdrawal was completed.
A UN investigation into Hariri’s killing implicated senior Syrian and Lebanese officials, but Syria refused to allow UN investigators to interview high-ranking Syrian officials, leading the Security Council to call unanimously for Syria to cooperate. A former Syrian vice president, Abdul Halim Khaddam, stated (Dec., 2005) that Syria had threatened Hariri and asserted that the assassination could not have happened without the support of high-ranking Syrian officials. (Khaddam, residing in Paris, also called for Assad to be removed from office.)
Assad was reelected in May, 2007, by referendum (he was the only candidate). In Sept., 2007, the Israeli air force attacked a military site in N Syria that may have been a nuclear facility under construction. International Atomic Energy Agency reports (2008, 2009) said that evidence indicated that the facility could have been a nuclear reactor, and called on Syria to cooperate, but Syria said the installation was a missile facilty. In June, 2009, the IAEA said it had found traces of processed uranium at another site.
An Arab League summit held in Syria in Mar., 2008, was attended by only half the Arab heads of state, as many sent lower-ranking officials as a protest against Syria's backing of Hezbollah and its allies in Lebanon. In Oct., 2008, U.S. forces launched a raid into Syria from Iraq in which U.S. sources claimed a key figure in the Iraq insurgency was killed; Syria denounced the attack, saying only civilians were killed, and mounted demonstrations against the attack

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Copyright (c) 2003 Columbia University Press.
Used by permission of Columbia University Press.

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Most local links in other categories also include extensive or interesting country information.
All sites are in English or an English version is available except where indicated with flag(s) without "+".
The flag(s) means the site is available in the language of the flag(s). If more than 5 languages (other than Arabic or English) the UN flag is used, example
Other languages means 5 languages other than English or Arabic
Arabic means it is available in Arabic only and +Arabic is available in Arabic and English

About Syria

General Information Also see Travel
All Referer Earth & environment, history, literature & arts, people, places, plants & animals, religion, science & technology, sports & everyday life....
AME Info Geography, people, government, economy, communication, transportation
ArabInfo Overview, government, history, links
ArabNet Overview, history, geography, business, culture, government, transport, tour guide, links
Atlapedia Geography, climate, people, demography, religion, education, modern history, currency, other information....
BBC Country Profile Key facts, figures and dates
Britannica.Com Country info, land, people, economy, society, government, history, culture, maps, statistics, links....
Cafe-Syria Complete guide on the Country of Syria
CIA World Factbook Map, geography, people, government, economy, communications, transportation, military, issues
Cradle of Civilizations Encyclopedia Americana, Syria, Damascus, land & natural resources, people, economy, history, government....
Country Reports Economy, defense, geography, government, people, anthem, map, news, weather, links....
Damascus Online +Arabic Everything Syrian! Damascus, photo gallery, encyclopedia, Syrian history, proverbs....
Encarta OnLine Info, land & resources, population, economy, government, history, other related items, links....
Encyclopaedia of the Orient Geography, politics, economy, health, education, religion, people, history, anthem, cities....
Expedia Almanac, fast facts, communications, on business, health & safety, transportation, traveler's directory
Hello Syria News, events, history, arts and traditions, tourism, attractions and general daily life
Info Please General info, map, geography, government, history, land & people....
MidEast.Com Damascus, Aleppo, Latkaia, Palmyra, Homs, Hama, Zabadani, Bosra, Banyas, Tartus, Arwad....
Syria - OnLine News, business, technology, culture, education, tourism, shopping, government, entertainment
Qamishly.Com Arabic People & Culture, songs of different ethnic groups, news....
Syria Today Government, history, politics, investment, industry, geography, trade....
Nation By Nation Info, government, human rights, news, geography, history, people, links....
US Library of Congress Everything you ever wanted to know about Syria....
World66 General info, cities, history, people, economy, getting around, getting there, links....

Cities, Towns, Municipalities & Places

Aleppo The rehabilitation of Old Aleppo - Media, overview, details....
Hama Arabic Everything about it.....
Marmarita Pictures, community, live radio, carnival....
Swaida Arabic History, Swaida & Shaba museums, towns & places, photos, web directory, Syria info....
Zaidal +Arabic A village located eastern to Homs
World Heritage Cities +Francais Espanol Ancient City of Aleppo - Inside Aleppo's seven gates is an urban grid of Hellenistic inspiration
World Heritage Cities +Francais Espanol Ancient City of Bosra - Monuments of volcanic stone, constructed over a period of two millennia
World Heritage Cities +Francais Espanol Ancient City of Damascus - Covered markets, caravan enclosures, palaces, minarets and cupolas
World Monuments Endangered sites: The Citadel of Aleppo
World Monuments Endangered sites: Damascus Old City & Saddle Souk

Flag, Maps, Useful Information....

Cellular News Cellular coverage map, systems, frequencies....
Ethnologue Languages
Flag Explanation, historical, military & political flags, subdivisions, national emblem....
World Atlas A brief description, fast facts, flag, landforms, maps, traveller info, weather
World Clock Local time, sunrise, sunset, GMT offset, daylight saving....
World Paper Money Paper currency since 1963

About Syria * Business * Culture * Education * History * Media * Organizations * Travel * Gateways * Arab Countries

Business and Economy

General, Economy, Reports & Statistics
Arab Development Center Providing information regarding the Syrian market.
Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Fact sheet (pdf) & travel information....
Bilateral Relations with Japan Diplomatic, investment, economic cooperation, residents....
Damascus Chamber Of Industry Industrial environment, investment, job & opportunities....
Federationof Syrian Chambers of Commerce Looks after commercial , economic and trade activities
MBendi Business information, news, industries, events
Muslim Trade Network Trade reference directory and guide....
Ports Focus Ports, harbours, marinas....
Syria and the IMF Position in the fund, reports....
Syria Report +Francais Business, economy, finance nes. (Need to subscribe)
Syrian Economic Society +Arabic Society board & members, conferences, archives....
US Department of Energy Analysis, information, oil, natural gas, coal, electricity....
US Department of State Country commercial guide 2001 (pdf)
World Bank Overview, news & events, data & statistics, publications & reports, development topics, projects & programs, Public Information Center

Banks

Directories, Job Opportunities

Dalylak +Arabic Directory sorted in alphabetical order and catagories, directory of Arab newspapers....
Elite +Arabic Human resources consultations....
Made in Syria Conducting business within Syria. A directory of Syrian-owned companies worldwide.
Syria Mart Arabic Commercial & industrial business directory, country & tourist info, economy, cultural & sport news....
Syria Noble +Arabic Business, arts and tourism directories, news, important websites....
Visit Syria +Francais Companies' websites, business & business guide

Future Corp. Provides Syrian Manpower

Investment & Promotion....

AL Salam International Conferences and Exhibitions. Organizing economic events and foreign exhibitions that aim to increase the Syrian exports
Al Yaman Fairs Exhibitions organizers
Atassi for Exhibitions & Marketing Exhibitions organizers


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Art, Culture & Sport

General Resources, Heritage....
Al-Mashriq - The Levant Cultural riches & gateway
Fannanin Arabic Syrian arts & artists in the fields of theatre, cinema,TV, song, music and all supporting disciplines

Art, Literature, Photography, Cinema....

Assad Dawwara Arabic Author of short stories. Window on Arabic and international works from other writers....
Hasan Yousef +Arabic Author, journalist - Short stories, TV, theater, cinema, pictures of Syria....
Mahmoud Hesso Painter. True internal visions emerging from the splendor of humanistic poetic agricultural society
Sahar Al-Jajeh Painter. Oil colours in different styles among them realism, impressionism, expressionism and abstract

Syria Art Paintings, graphics, photography, sculptures. Artists and their work

Images of Syria Ancient cities, mosque-rich cities, dead cities and fortresses....
Robert Bremec Syria Photo Diary - Cities & places
Travel Photos Aleppo - Hama - Al-Bara - Serjilla - Apamea - Ugarit - Qala'at Marqab - Krak des Chevaliers - Palmyra - Damascus

Arab Film Distribution - Syria Features a wide range of narrative films, documentaries, visual essays and ethnographic films
Internet Movie Database Movie & TV reports

Music, Song & Dance....

Husain Sabsaby Arabic Oud player. Music in images, about the oud....

Cultural, Scientific, Environmental, Sporting Entities & Info

La Syrie +Arabic Francais An initiative of the French- Syrian friendship group of the French Senate

Animal Info Threatened species, environmental and social data
AquaStat Information on quantity and quality of freshwater and its availability
BirdLife To determine the priorities for bird conservation in the region

Syrian Soccer Arabic Results, photo gallery, clubs, players....

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Education

Schools, Colleges, Academies, Universities & Polytechnics
Arab European University An institution of higher education and academic research

WorldWide Classroom University & adult education, K12 & teen....

Institutions & Organizations

Higher Institute for Applied Science and Technology Arabic
Higher Institute of Business Administration- HIBA +Arabic Stress the theoretical as well as the practical aspects of Management

Research, Resources & Projects


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History, Human Right & Politics

Ancient & Modern....
Assad.Org A tribute to the late president and a welcome to the new president
BBC Timeline A chronology of key events
Golan This web site is designed to explain how the occupied Golan is a part of the Syrian Homeland, seized by Israel
Political Geography Land and people, economy, history....
World Statesmen Flags, chronology, rulers, governors, ministers, commissioners....

Human Rights, Politics & Political Parties....

Amnesty International +Francais Espanol News, reports, urgent action. Latest annual report....
Human Rights Watch +Arabic Other languages Human rights developments & report
Syrian Human Rights Committee +Arabic Dedicated to defending human rights and a civil society in Syria
US Department of State Country reports on human rights practices

Al-Tajamoh Al-Watani Al-Dimocraty +Francais Political statement, articles, opinions....
Committees for the Defense of Democratic Freedom and Human Rights Arabic
Moslem Brotherhood - Jama't Al-Ikhwan Al-Muslimeen Arabic News, forums, reports, interviews, personalities, directory....
Syrian Social Nationalist Party +Francais Syria is for the Syrians and the Syrians are a complete nation

Related Sites, Articles....

Constitution Background, history & news

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Visit Arab Media for satellite stations & Arab newspapers

Media

Newspapers, Magazines....
Al-Baath Arabic Daily newspaper
Al-Thawra +Arabic Francais Daily newspaper in Damascus - includes Al-Fida, Al-Jamaheer, Al-Mawqef Al-Riyadi, Al-Orouba, Al-Wahda....
Teshreen Arabic Daily newspaper
Syria Times Daily newspaper

OnLine News, Newsletters, News Agencies....

Al-Hiwar Al-Dimocraty+Arabic Francais Political....
Al-Sham Arabic Online news and forums....
Syria Daily Online news
Syria Path Arabic Online Syrian community featuring local news, discussion forums, and chat rooms
Syria Today Online magazine & web portal covering Syrian economic,social, developmental and cultural affairs
Syrian Arab News Agency - SANA +Arabic Francais Information, news updates, news analyses, reports, press review, headlines....
Washington Post News & references
Yahoo full news coverage

Radio, TV, Internet....

Syrian Radio & TV Arabic News, articles, analysis, forums....

Articles, Reports, Cartoons....


About Syria * Business * Culture * Education * History * Media * Organizations * Travel * Gateways * Arab Countries

Visit Arab Organizations for Pan-Arab, middle East, North Africa and regional organizations

Government & Organizations....

Government, Ministries, Overseas Missions, Embassies....
Chiefs of State and Cabinet Members
Political Leaders Dates and figures of the leadership since 1943 (with pictures)
The Presidency Arabic Bashar Al-Assad, biography, photos, speeches, news....

Civil Affairs at the Ministry of Interior +Arabic Services offered to the Syrian and foreign nationals in issues related to civil status, civil registration and the ownership of real estates
Ministry of Economy and Foreign Trade +Arabic Liberalized foreign trade policy and incentives to foreign investors
Ministry of Information +Arabic Supervises the function of the various mass communication media in the country

Corporations, Organizations, Public Hospitals and Industrial Entities

Arab Advertising Organization +Arabic Strengthening the position of advertisement in the country and in promoting its industry
Syrian Telecom +Arabic Syrian Internet Service Provider

Centers, Institutions, Societies....

Studies Center for Handicapped Research- SCHR Provide for children with special needs good opportunities
Syrian Cosmological Society Arabic News, events, activities, links....
Syrian Orthopaedic Association +Arabic

Foreign Entities

Norwegian Embassy Visa, Beirut, press, news....
US Embassy US mission, consular services, latest news, US policy, journals, articles....

British Counsil Library and information services, events, news, conferences, learn English
United Nations - Syria UN agencies, about Syria....
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Focusing on human development issues....
US Committee for Refugees Reports on conditions for refugees and internally displaced persons
World Food Programme Fight against global hunger....
World Health Organization Tobacco & health, socio-economic situation

About Syria * Business * Culture * Education * History * Media * Organizations * Travel * Gateways * Arab Countries

Travel & Tourism

Airlines, Air, Sea & Coach Charters Services
Syrian Air +Arabic Fleet, safety, cargo, schedules

Travel, Tours, Guides.... More country info

Abinos Travel & Tourism Knowledge of the country (past & present time)....
Al-Bichr Travel Meet Syria - Guided tours through the chosen cities and the secret places of old Greek Roman time, Asuriyan times and remains of French influences
Al-Hurriye Tours of Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan. History of Syria, cities & sites, Itineraries, Jordan & Lebanon....
Allied Tours Syria map and cities, Syria info, tours....
Arabesk Al-Afaq Tours +Francais Deutsch Espanol Combined tours: Syria with Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Yemen and Gulf countries
Atlas Tours About Syria, services....
East & West Travel & Tours +Arabic Damascus and around Syria Tours
Hammourabi Travel & Tourism Groups and individuals tours to Syria, Lebanon, Jordan etc, general and places info....
The Magic of Syria A popular weekly guaranteed departure program
Nawafir Travel and Tours +Deutsch Discover the wonders of Syria and the Arab world....
Rezon Travel & Tourism +Arabic Offers a complete package tour services ....
Souria.Com +Arabic Heritage of Syria through Travel and Tourism, Magazine and Electronic Maps
Soufan Travel & Tourism Golf vacations and Cruises In Syria and Lebanon
Sun Travel & Tourism Package tours In Syria, Jordan and Lebanon
Syria Guide Amazing Syria, travel agents, hotels, restaurants, rent a car, business, art products, health clubs....
Syria Tourism Official site of the Ministry of Tourism. Destinations, travel information and services available to the tourist
Syria Travel Info on archaeological sites, colourful souks, outstanding restaurants, cities, shopping and other genral info

Lonely Planet Travel information, maps, photos, background historical and cultural information
Middle East Travel Accommodation, history, after hours, travel info, addresses, cities & sights, business....
Travel Guide General & travel info, money, duty free, health, accommodation, visas....
Travel Puppy Syria travel information & guide
World Travel Guide Accommodation, addresses, business, climate, essentials, resort, social, travel

Hotels, Resorts, Inns, Hostels....

Carrlton Hotel Overlooking the historical breathtaking scenery of Damascus
Carlton Idleb Hotel Located within the historical sites of northern Syria
Fardoss Tower Hotel Located at the center of Damascus
Pullman Al Shahba Hotel Located close to downtown and historic city center of Aleppo
Regency Park Hotel Located in Bloudan, the countryside of Damascus
Shahin Hotel & Tower Tartous
Venezia Hotel +Arabic Damascus - An ideal stopover for both business and leisure guests

All Hotels Hotels, description & rates
Syria Hotels Travel Guide Offers hotels and resorts online reservations


Health & Travel Tips
Foreign & Commonwealth Office Travel information, country advise, latest travel updates....
Travel Document Systems Passports, visas, travel documents
Syria Health +Arabic Directory, journals, hospitals, news, articles
US Consular Information Visa, health, crime/drug penalties....

Weather....

Weather Underground Temperature, humidity, pressure
Yahoo Weather By city. Forcast, sunrise, sunset, humidity, wind, dewpoint....

About Syria * Business * Culture * Education * History * Media * Organizations * Travel * Gateways * Arab Countries

Visit Arab Gateways for Arab and other country links

Gateways to Syria

Al-Sham.Net +Arabic Directory, Syrian Cities, Chat, News, Fun & Games....
Syria Gate Gateway, services....
Syria Hit +Arabic Search engine, news, ads....
Syria-Net Directories, news, info....
Syria OnLine Directories, news, About Syria....
Syria Port Catagorized directory, promote Syria, both technically and culturally.
Syrians.Info Catagorized directory, search engine, news, photo gallery....

About Syria * Business * Culture * Education * History * Media * Organizations * Travel * Gateways * Arab Countries


For personal pages, private companies & entities, un-categorized and other sites, please visit
Add URL or View Syria Links Page

Books

Here is a selection of books, CDs and videos that will eventually cover various subjects related to Syria.
Click on the book title for full details and reviews.

Recommended reading:


Syria & Lebanon
(Lonely Planet)

By Lara Dunston, Terry Carter

Culture Shock! Syria
A Survivial Guide to
Customs and Etiquette

By Coleman South

The Monuments of Syria
A Guide

By Ross Burns

For "Learning Arabic" books and CDs, visit Writing & Pronouncing of Arabic names


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Created 1 November 2000. Last updated 23 February 2011
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