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Turkey Shells Northern Syria for Second Day

BEIRUT, Feb 14 – The Turkish army shelled positions held by Kurdish-backed militia in northern Syria for a second day on Sunday, killing two fighters, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said. Turkey on Saturday demanded the powerful Syrian Kurdish YPG militia withdraw from areas that it had captured in the northern Aleppo

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Saudi Arabia Confirms Sending Jets to Turkey for IS Fight

CAIRO, Feb 14  – Saudi Arabia confirmed late on Saturday it sent aircraft to NATO-member Turkey’s Incirlik air base for the fight against Daesh (IS) militants. Brigadier General Ahmed al Assiri, adviser in the office of Saudi Arabia’s minister of defence, told pan-Arab Al Arabiya television that the kingdom was committed to stepping up the fighting

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Syrian Army Edges Towards Daesh Bastion, Jets Hit Rebel Towns

By Tom Perry and Paul Carrel BEIRUT/MUNICH, Feb 13 – Syrian government forces were poised to advance into the Daesh stronghold of Raqqa province and allied Russian jets kept up air strikes on rebel-held towns north of Aleppo, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on Saturday. An advance into Raqqa would re-establish a Syrian

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Russia Denies Bombing Civilians in Syria

By Paul Carrel and Shadia Nasralla MUNICH, Feb 13 (Reuters) – France led international criticism of Russia on Saturday for bombing civilians in Syria, a charge Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev rejected as major powers bickered openly just a day after they agreed a pause in combat in Syria. The differences between the stakeholders in

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U.N. Warns of Hunger in Homs as Syrian Offensive Strands 120,000

GENEVA, Feb 11 – A military offensive by Syrian government and allied forces has cut off 120,000 people in the northern Homs governorate since mid-January, worsening hunger and killing patients unable to get to medical care, a U.N. report said on Thursday. “There are reports of increasingly acute shortages of food, basic commodities, medical items

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Syrian Kurdish Forces Reportedly Capture Most of Rebel-held Ex-Army Airport

BEIRUT, Feb 11 – Kurdish-led fighters aided by Russian bombing captured a rebel-held former Syrian military airport near the border with Turkey, a monitor and rebels said on Thursday. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said heavy fighting took place between Kurds and Syrian insurgents around Menagh airport and Russian warplanes staged at least 30

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Border Hospitals Overwhelmed by Russian-Backed Assault on Syria’s Aleppo

By Humeyra Pamuk KILIS, Turkey, Feb 11 – Hospitals near the Syrian frontline have come under attack and been overwhelmed by severely wounded victims of Russian air strikes, taking the area’s health system to the verge of collapse, health workers say. French charity Medecins Sans Frontiers (MSF), which runs six hospitals in Syria and provides support

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Scant Hope of Syria Peace Breakthrough as Russia Pounds Rebels

By John Irish and Louis Charbonneau PARIS/UNITED NATIONS, Feb 10 (Reuters) – Major powers meeting in Germany on Thursday aim to revive Syria peace efforts, but with Russia backing a government push for a military victory, opposition delegates and Western officials see little hope of a diplomatic breakthrough. United Nations Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura

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U.N. Fears for Hundreds of Thousands if Syria Troops Encircle Aleppo

By Tom Miles and Stephanie Nebehay GENEVA, Feb 9 – Hundreds of thousands of civilians could be cut off from food supplies if Syrian government forces succeed in their offensive to encircle rebel-held parts of Aleppo, the United Nations said on Tuesday, warning of a massive new flight of refugees. Syrian government forces, backed by

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Russian Firepower Helps Syrian Forces Edge Towards Turkey Border

By Suleiman Al Khalidi BEIRUT, Feb 8 – The Syrian army advanced towards the Turkish border on Monday in a major offensive backed by Russia and Iran that rebels say now threatens the future of their nearly five-year-old insurrection against President Bashar Al Assad. Iranian backed-militias played a key role on the ground as Russian

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