syria

Netanyahu to Putin: Iran’s Growing Syria Role Threatens Israel

By Denis Pinchuk SOCHI, Russia, Aug 23 – Iran’s growing role in Syria poses a threat to Israel, the Middle East and the world, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday. “Mr. President, with joint efforts we are defeating Daesh, and this is a very important thing. But the bad

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Muslim Cyclists Biking Across Nine Countries Finally Reach Saudi Arabia for Hajj

Eight British Muslims have arrived in Saudi Arabia for Hajj after five weeks of cycling across nine countries and 3,200 kilometres. Known as the “Hajj Riders,” the eight men started from the East London Mosque in the British capital and biked through the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Italy, Greece and Egypt before arriving in

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Raqqa Families Make Daring Escapes from Daesh Stronghold

By John Davison RAQQA, Syria, Aug 21 – As Shawakh al-Omar huddled with 16 relatives in a single room in house in Daesh Syrian stronghold Raqqa, a mortar round slammed into the home next door, killing four people and shaking the building. The 57-year-old decided they should make a run for it. “We didn’t even have

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Syria’s Assad Says War Still Not Won But West’s Plots Foiled

AMMAN, Aug 20 – Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said on Sunday that while his country had foiled Western designs to topple him, his army had not won Syria’s war and the fight was continuing to crush a six-year old insurgency. In an televised address, Assad said that even though there were signs of victory after

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Israel’s Netanyahu to Discuss Middle East with Putin

JERUSALEM, Aug 20 – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will discuss the Middle East with Russian President Vladimir Putin when they meet in the Russian resort of Sochi next week, his office said on Saturday. Israel is concerned Iran is trying to establish a permanent military foothold in Syria. Netanyahu said in a speech last

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Iraq Starts Offensive to Take Back Tal Afar from Daesh

By Maher Chmaytelli ERBIL, Iraq, Aug 20 – Iraqi security forces launched on Sunday an offensive to take back the city of Tal Afar, their next objective in the U.S.-backed campaign to defeat Islamic State militants, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said. “You either surrender, or die,” Abadi said in a televised speech announcing the offensive,

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Fighters, Refugees, Leave Lebanon Enclave for Syria

BEIRUT, Aug 14 – A group of Syrian rebels and refugees began to leave a border enclave in Lebanon for Syrian territory on Monday under a deal worked out with Lebanese and Syrian authorities, a TV station affiliated to Hezbollah said. The departure of rebels from a group called Saraya Ahl al-Sham will leave a

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Syrian Army Takes Last Daesh-Held Town in Homs

BEIRUT, Aug 6 – Syrian government and allied forces have taken the last major town in Homs province from Daesh, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Saturday, as the army advances toward militant strongholds in the east of the country. The town of al-Sukhna lies some 50 km (30 miles) northeast of the

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Refugees from Lebanon Camps Arrive at Edge of Syrian Rebel Zone

BEIRUT, Aug 3 – Buses carrying Syrians who left Lebanon after a ceasefire between Hezbollah and Nusra militants on Thursday started crossing into the rebel-held zone where they will settle, a Hezbollah military media unit reported. About 7,000 Syrians, including Nusra militants and refugees, left the Arsal district on the border between Lebanon and Syria

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Staying Alive: WhatsApp Finds New Uses in Conflict Zones

By Inna Lazareva YAOUNDE, Aug 3 – These days, the word on the street in war-torn Syria is that hospitals are best avoided – even if you’re injured. “Sometimes we hear that people feel the home is safer than the hospital,” said Mohamed Elamein, an information officer at the World Health Organization (WHO) in Gaziantep,

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