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Four Iran Army Special Forces Troops Killed in Syria

DUBAI, April 11 – Four soldiers in Iran’s regular army were killed in Syria, the Tasnim news agency reported on Monday, only a week after Tehran announced the deployment of army commandos to help President Bashar al-Assad in the civil war there. Tehran is Assad’s main regional ally and has provided military and economic support

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Assad Calls on U.N. to Help Restore Ancient Palmyra

BEIRUT, March 30 – President Bashar al-Assad called on the United Nations and other international organisations on Wednesday to help Syria to restore Palmyra after government forces drove Daesh militants out of the ancient city. State news agency SANA said Assad made the appeal in a message to Ban Ki-moon, in which he also thanked

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CIA Head Discussed Assad Leaving Power in Moscow this Month: RIA

MOSCOW, March 28 – The director of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, John Brennan, raised the issue of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad leaving power when he visited Moscow at the start of March, RIA news agency cited the U.S. embassy in Russia as saying on Monday. Brennan also discussed the observance of the ceasefire in

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Russia’s Putin, Iran’s Rouhani Agree to Cooperate Closely on Syria

MOSCOW, March 28 – The presidents of Russia and Iran agreed on Monday to step up bilateral contacts, including over the Syrian conflict, in which both countries are allies of President Bashar al-Assad. The Syrian government and Western-backed opposition are currently holding U.N.-mediated peace talks as part of a diplomatic push launched with U.S.-Russian support

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Syrian Forces Pursue Campaign Against Daesh After Retaking Palmyra

By Lisa Barrington BEIRUT, March 28 – Syrian government forces backed by Russian air strikes battled Daesh insurgents around Palmyra on Monday, trying to extend their gains after taking back control of a city whose ancient temples were dynamited by the ultra-radical militants. The loss of Palmyra on Sunday amounts to one of the biggest setbacks

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Iran Congratulates Syria’s Assad on Regaining Palmyra

DUBAI, March 28 – The secretary of the Iranian National Security Council has congratulated Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on regaining the city of Palmyra, Tasnim news agency reported on Monday. “The determination of the Syrian nation, government and army to eliminate terrorist and takfiri groups from the occupied territories is something to be proud of,”

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Iran’s Zarif to Discuss Business, Syria on Turkey Visit

By David Dolan ISTANBUL, March 19 – Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif joined his Turkish hosts in Istanbul on Saturday in condemning a suicide bombing by suspected Kurdish militants in a main shopping district that killed five people. Zarif, on a visit to bolster bilateral trade and discuss political differences over the war in

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Iran Sees Russia’s Withdrawal from Syria as “Positive Sign”

DUBAI, March 16 – Iran’s foreign minister has called Russia’s decision to withdraw its forces from Syria “a positive sign”, while a senior security official said the move was pre-planned and not a surprise to Tehran. President Vladimir Putin unexpectedly announced on Monday that most Russian forces would be withdrawn from Syria after deploying in

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Syrian Opposition Casts Doubt on U.N. Peace Talk Plan

By Lisa Barrington and John Davison BEIRUT, March 3 – Syrian rebels said on Wednesday they were under fierce government attack near the Turkish border despite a cessation of hostilities agreement and a representative cast doubt on whether U.N.-backed peace talks would go ahead on March 9 as planned. The agreement drawn up by the

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