About 50 fighters from the Free Syrian Army have entered Kobani, Syria, to provide reinforcements for the Kurdish fighters seeking to maintain control of the town. Separately, Nusra Front militants have seized several villages in Syria's Idlib province from more moderate rebels.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met with U.S. President Barack Obama on Thursday to discuss Syria and North Korea. Ban thanked Obama for "his government's generous support on this humanitarian assistance" in Syria.
Ghana's economic progress is being put at risk by lack of water, writes Moses Mozart Dzawu. "Although water shortages have long plagued parts of the continent, they've become the potential killer of Africa's economic takeoff," Dzawu writes.
A new draft resolution condemning Syria's crackdown on anti-government protesters was making the rounds among diplomats at the UN Security Council, apparently with strong Arab backing. Arab and Western governments hope the initiative will finally win over Russia, which today said it remained opposed to sanctions on the Syrian regime, which has forcefully rejected an Arab League effort to broker an end to the 10-month conflict.
Reports indicate that Mohammed Suleiman, the Syrian general who was assassinated in the beach resort of Tartous, oversaw weapons shipments to Hezbollah. Syria's government, which is notoriously tight-lipped on matters of internal security, has not commented on his murder, though a former Syrian vice president now living in exile claims that he was shot by a sniper from a yacht. Asked whether it had any hand in the assassination of Suleiman -- who also oversaw Syria's nuclear program -- Israel said that it had no direct comment or knowledge about it.