Syrian government loyalists stormed the US embassy after the ambassador visited Hama, a city that has become a focal point of the protest movement.
Syria protests continued for a third day in Deraa with security forces reportedly using tear gas and firing live ammunition to disperse demonstrators. Eyes are now turning to the restive Kurdish population.
Israel's Navy seized a ship off the coast of Cyprus with 500 tons of weapons that it alleges were sent by Iran to Syria, and ultimately destined for Hezbollah militants in Lebanon.
The disputed territory is key to the broader US goal of Arab-Israeli peace. On Monday, Washington hosted the first high-ranking Syrian official in five years.
US envoy Mitchell was in Egypt Thursday, and arrives in Damascus Friday. Syrians hope for a new rapprochement under an Obama administration.
Syrian diplomats say Damascus is serious about making peace, and hope Washington will lean on Israel's new government.
At the Arab League summit Monday, the UN secretary general condemned Sudan's expulsion of humanitarian aid groups in response to the ICC arrest warrant for Bashir.
It's about Iran, Iraq, and Israel. The two foes planned to meet in Riyadh Wednesday to solidify Arab unity amid regional volatility.
Damascus is seeking an arms deal with Moscow, a move that would bolster its position in the Middle East.