Anti-tank guided missiles recently supplied by Saudi Arabiaare boosting rebel positions in southern Syria. Opposition fighters reportedly used the Russia-designed Konkurs anti-tank weapons in an assault on the Syrian army in Daraa as well as near the rebel stronghold of Laja. According to some experts, the recent arms deliveries may signal the beginning of a major supply line, headed by Saudi Arabia, into southern Syria.
Meanwhile, the U.S. Defense Department is converting a warehouse on the outskirts of the Jordanian capital of Amman into a military operations center, Centcom Forward-Jordan, in order to coordinate support for the Jordanian military. The move comes as Jordan copes with a soaring refugee crisis from the Syrian civil war and as concerns of cross-border spillover increase. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin E. Dempsey, said the mission is to show Jordanians “that they can count on us to continue to be their partner.” He continued, “We are at our best when we can actually shape events and prevent conflict.” Thousands ofSyrian refugeesflowed into the Kurdistan region of northern Iraq on Thursday, crossing a new pontoon bridge over the Tigris River. According to the United Nations, between 5,000 and 7,000 refugees followed an initial group of about 750 people, adding to the over 150,000 Syrian refugees already registered in Iraq.