• Germany's news in English
 
jobs_header_v3

Germany expels four Syrian embassy staff

The Local · 10 Dec 2012, 14:15

Published: 10 Dec 2012 14:15 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

"We are sending a clear message with the expulsion of four Syrian embassy staff that we are reducing relations with the Assad regime to an absolute minimum," Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said in a statement.

"We are counting on the [opposition] national coalition growing more stable and developing as soon as possible functioning institutions for the political transition," he added.

The ministry said that Syria's acting envoy to Berlin had been informed of the decision earlier Monday and that the staff had until Thursday "to leave their posts."

Germany had expelled its Syrian ambassador in May, along with France, Britain, Italy and Spain following a massacre of more than 100 people in the Houla region, north of Homs.

And in February, it threw out another four Syrian diplomats after the arrest of two men suspected of spying on regime opponents in Germany.

Ninety-four people, mostly civilians, were killed on Sunday across Syria, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which relies on activists and medics for information.

The latest violence came ahead of a Friends of Syria nations meeting in Marrakesh on Wednesday, which will bring together countries that support the anti-Assad revolt including Germany represented by Westerwelle.

Arab and Western states will consider two key issues concerning the 21-month conflict -- the political transition in the event of Assad's fall, and mobilising vital humanitarian aid as winter sets in.

Since the last meeting, in Paris in July, the number of people killed has risen from 16,000 to more than 42,000, according to the Observatory.

AFP/jcw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit


Your comments about this article

19:29 December 10, 2012 by raandy
Other than the people that worked there ,Who Cares?
Today's headlines
Nazi POW leaves estate to 'kind' Scottish village
The former German soldier stayed on to work in the Perthshire village for a time after the war. Photo: Andy Buchanan / AFP file picture

A former Nazi prisoner of war has left his entire estate in his will to a small village in Scotland to show his appreciation for the kindness he received there during his captivity.

US tries to block Chinese purchase of Aixtron
Photo: Oliver Berg / DPA / AFP

US President Barack Obama on Friday moved to block a Chinese company's purchase of German semiconductor equipment maker Aixtron by rejecting the inclusion of Aixtron's US business in the deal.

Merkel to chart 2017 election battle at party congress
Photo: Tobias Schwarz / AFP

After Donald Trump's shock victory, Francois Hollande's decision not to seek re-election and populism on the rise, German Chancellor Angela Merkel is next up on the campaign podium to set out her strategy for winning in 2017 polls.

Berlin vs Munich: whose newborn polar bear is cuter?
Berlin's (left) and Munich's (right) newborn bears. Photos: Tierpark Berlin / DPA

Both city zoos welcomed baby polar bears into the world in November, with Berlin zoo its releasing first photos on Friday. But which one is more adorable?

Learn how to speak German like a silver screen icon
Dirty Harry. Photo: DPA

We all agree that there is no other option than to learn irregular German verbs by rote. But when you want a bit of downtime, why not learn from your big screen heroes?

Stolen Dachau 'Work will set you free' gate found: police
The entrance to Sachsenhausen concentration camp. Photo: DPA

An iron gate from the former Nazi concentration camp in Germany's Dachau with the slogan "Arbeit macht frei" ("Work will set you free") has been found two years after it was stolen, police said Friday.

Mystery flight path artist draws new message in sky
Photo: DPA

A pilot who likes to draw patterns in the sky using his flight path has returned with his greatest artwork yet.

Berlin 'abusing power' to stop Snowden coming to Germany
Edward Snowden. Photo: DPA

Opposition parties have accused the coalition government of overstepping its authority in its attempt to block American whistleblower Edward Snowden's trip to Germany.

Germany gains record number of Michelin-star restaurants
Head of the Michelin Guide, Michael Ellis (centre) with Michelin-star chefs at a presentation in Berlin. Photo: DPA.

Germany had a slew of newly minted Michelin-star restaurants this year, and its top-rated establishments held onto their prestigious three stars.

At last: Germany passes major disabled rights reform
People in wheelchairs watch as the German parliament deliberates on the new disability rights reform. Photo: DPA.

For years people with disabilities in Germany have called for legislation to provide them with better benefits and opportunities in life and work. On Thursday the German parliament passed such a reform - but is it enough?

Lifestyle
10 German Christmas cookies you have to bake this winter
Sponsored Article
The key to launching your international career
Lifestyle
Our 10-step guide for doing Christmas just like a German
National
Here's why so many Germans vote for the far-right AfD
National
7 events in Germany that'll make December unforgettable
Lifestyle
7 frosty German sayings to make you a winter wordsmith
National
This is how unequal German society has become
National
Six things you should know about the Lufthansa strike
National
9 ways living in Germany will make you a better person
National
These 10 German Christmas markets cannot be missed
Features
8 German words that unlock amazing secrets in English
Culture
10 German words with simply hilarious literal translations
Lifestyle
7 things Germans do that make foreigners feel awkward
International
Why Donald Trump's grandad was booted out of Germany
National
This is what is really inside your Döner kebab
National
Rejoice! Christmas markets start opening across Germany
Education
These German universities are best at landing you a job
Travel
Why Heidelberg is Germany's most inspiring city
Lifestyle
This soppy German Christmas ad will bring you to tears
National
Here's where Germans speak the best (and worst) English
Culture
10 German books you have to read before you die
Culture
U-Bahn train found filled with autumn foliage in Berlin
Features
Seven German words that unlock amazing secrets about English
Travel
Germany's ten most beautiful towns you've never visited
6,591
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd