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Syria Politics

SYRIA POLITICS: Russia Says Will Target US-Backed Fighters in Syria if Provoked

SYRIA POLITICS: Russia Says Will Target US-Backed Fighters in Syria if Provoked

The Russian Defence Ministry said the SDF had taken up positions on the eastern banks of the Euphrates with U.S. special forces, and had twice opened fire with mortars and artillery on Syrian troops who were working alongside Russian special forces.

“A representative of the U.S. military command in Al Udeid (the U.S. operations centre in Qatar) was told in no uncertain terms that any attempts to open fire from areas where SDF fighters are located would be quickly shut down,” Major-General Igor Konashenkov said in a statement.

“Fire points in those areas will be immediately suppressed with all military means.”

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SYRIA POLITICS: As Assad Cements Victories, UK, US Say Will Rebuild Syria

SYRIA POLITICS: As Assad Cements Victories, UK, US Say Will Rebuild Syria

“We believe that the only way forward is to get a political process going and to make it clear to the Iranians, Russians and Assad regime that we, the like-minded group, will not support the reconstruction of Syria until there is such a political process and that means, as Resolution 2254 says, to a transition away from Assad,” British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said, referring to a resolution adopted at the UN Security Council in 2015.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Russia, Iran, Turkey Agree on Idlib ‘Safe Zones’

SYRIA POLITICS: Russia, Iran, Turkey Agree on Idlib ‘Safe Zones’

In a joint statement after two days of talks in Kazakhstan, the three countries said on Friday that they had agreed “to allocate” their forces to patrol the zone covering Idlib province and parts of the neighboring Latakia, Hama and Aleppo regions.

“Observers from these three countries will be deployed at check and observation points in safe zones that form the borders of the de-escalation zone,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

“The main mission of these observers has been defined as the prevention of clashes between the government and the opposition forces and any violations of the truce,” it added.

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SYRIA POLITICS: 85% of Syria Liberated By Syrian Troops: Russian MoD

SYRIA POLITICS: 85% of Syria Liberated By Syrian Troops: Russian MoD

Lieutenant General Aleksandr Lapin, Russian chief of staff in Syria, told reporters at Khmeimim air base that the Syrian forces will now have to liberate the remaining 15 percent, around 27,000 square kilometers.

“Currently the operation to free the city is ongoing. The Syrian military will soon finish off the IS forces that used to occupy the city’s neighborhoods,” the Lieutenant General said in a briefing.

The blockade of Deir ez-Zor was broken on September 5 by Syrian forces, after three years of IS control of the city.

“The command posts and communication networks of the terrorists were destroyed by Kalibr cruise missiles, launched from the Black Sea escort vessel ‘Admiral Essen’. This disrupted control of IS units in the area. Over 450 terrorists, 5 tanks and 42 pickups with heavy machine guns were liquidated during the operation,” the Lieutenant General added.

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SYRIA POLITICS: US Forces Better Leave Syria on their Own: Syrian Deputy FM

SYRIA POLITICS: US Forces Better Leave Syria on their Own: Syrian Deputy FM

Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al-Mekdad said the presence of any foreign forces in Syria would be unacceptable. Mekdad referred to ongoing operations by the Syrian military and its allies to free the province of Dayr al-Zawr from Daesh terrorists and said the Dayr al-Zawr battle was the last major battle in Syria. What remained, he said, were small, minor battles.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Israel Hits Syria Target Reportedly Tied to Chemical Weapons: Syrian Army

SYRIA POLITICS: Israel Hits Syria Target Reportedly Tied to Chemical Weapons: Syrian Army

The Observatory reported a total of seven people killed and wounded in the strike. Amos Yadlin, a former head of Israeli military intelligence, said the reported attack was not routine and targeted a Syrian military scientific centre.

“The factory that was targeted in Masyaf produces the chemical weapons and barrel bombs that have killed thousands of Syrian civilians,” Yadlin said in a tweet.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Syrian Government Forces Used Chemical Weapons More than Two Dozen Times: UN

SYRIA POLITICS: Syrian Government Forces Used Chemical Weapons More than Two Dozen Times: UN

“Government forces continued the pattern of using chemical weapons against civilians in opposition-held areas. In the gravest incident, the Syrian air force used sarin in Khan Sheikhoun, Idlib, killing dozens, the majority of whom were women and children,” the U.N. report said, declaring the attack a war crime.

The Assad government has repeatedly denied using chemical weapons. It said its strikes in Khan Sheikhoun hit a weapons depot belonging to rebel forces, a claim dismissed by the U.N. investigators.

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SYRIA POLITICS: ‘Unacceptable Price for Civilians’: UN Says US-Led Coalition Airstrikes May Breach International Law

SYRIA POLITICS: ‘Unacceptable Price for Civilians’: UN Says US-Led Coalition Airstrikes May Breach International Law

“Given the extremely high number of reports of civilian casualties this month and the intensity of the air strikes on Raqqa, coupled with ISIL’s use of civilians as human shields, I am deeply concerned that civilians – who should be protected at all times – are paying an unacceptable price and that forces involved in battling ISIL are losing sight of the ultimate goal of this battle,” Zeid said in a statement on Thursday.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Syrian Army Crushing Terrorists: Assad

SYRIA POLITICS: Syrian Army Crushing Terrorists: Assad

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says, “We have managed to foil the Western project. West is like a chameleon due to its behavior to fit different situations. The psychological war against the Damascus government has failed to discourage us from fighting terrorism or even frighten us… We have fought terror since day one, and we will continue to fight it until there is no terrorist in Syria…”

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SYRIA POLITICS: Assad Extends Grip in Areas Captured From ISIS

SYRIA POLITICS: Assad Extends Grip in Areas Captured From ISIS

Rolf Holmboe, Research Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute and former Danish Ambassador to Syria said, “..The Russians want a solution on their terms, which is one where Assad stays in power. The ceasefires do two things. They allow the Russians to take control of the political negotiations and look good internationally. But more importantly, they allow Assad and the Iranian-backed militias to free troops to grab the territory that Islamic State is about to lose.”

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SYRIA POLITICS: Foreign Fighters Return ‘Disillusioned’ By Groups They Joined: UN Reports

SYRIA POLITICS: Foreign Fighters Return ‘Disillusioned’ By Groups They Joined: UN Reports

“It is this failure to deliver, coupled with its extreme, violent ideology and brutal tactics, its in-fighting and the corruption of some of its leaders, that, according to this survey, most often gives rise to the disappointment and sense of disenfranchisement and exclusion that leads foreign terrorist fighters to defect,” UN report says.

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SYRIA POLITICS: 10 Russian Servicemen Killed Fighting in Syria this Year 2017

SYRIA POLITICS: 10 Russian Servicemen Killed Fighting in Syria this Year 2017

The scale of Russian military casualties in peace time has been a state secret since Putin issued a decree three months before Russia launched its operation in Syria. While Russia does not give total casualties, it does disclose some deaths.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Russia Slams US, Western Allies Rushed to Judgment in Syria Gas Incident

SYRIA POLITICS: Russia Slams US, Western Allies Rushed to Judgment in Syria Gas Incident

Over 90 people died in an April 4 gas incident involving chemicals in Khan Shaykhun. Later US fired 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at Shayrat airfield, Syria.

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SYRIA POLITICS: US Coalition Must Pay for ‘Illegitimately’ Destroying Syria: Damascus to UN

SYRIA POLITICS: US Coalition Must Pay for ‘Illegitimately’ Destroying Syria: Damascus to UN

Syria wants the US and its allies to pay for the destruction of Syrian infrastructure and to bear legal responsibility for “illegitimately” bombing civilian targets, Damascus has told the UN, demanding that the American-led coalition strikes stop.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Syrian Kurds Should Take Part in Drafting New Constitution: UN Envoy

SYRIA POLITICS: Syrian Kurds Should Take Part in Drafting New Constitution: UN Envoy

Staffan de Mistura told Russia’s RIA news agency in an interview published on Tuesday that the Kurds should not be ignored and their representatives must be allowed to take part in producing the initial version of such a document.

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SYRIA POLITICS: US Would Consider No-Fly Zone in Syria If Russia Agrees

SYRIA POLITICS: US Would Consider No-Fly Zone in Syria If Russia Agrees

“If our two countries work together to establish stability on the ground, it will lay a foundation for progress on the settlement of Syria’s political future,” Tillerson said.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Bashar al-Assad Appears on Syrian Currency for First Time

SYRIA POLITICS: Bashar al-Assad Appears on Syrian Currency for First Time

President Bashar al-Assad has appeared on the Syrian currency for the first time, his portrait printed on a new 2,000-pound banknote that went into circulation on Sunday.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Damascus Preparing for Chemical Weapons Attack ‘Baseless’: Syria’s Foreign Ministry

SYRIA POLITICS: Damascus Preparing for Chemical Weapons Attack ‘Baseless’: Syria’s Foreign Ministry

US moves could be aimed at derailing the fifth round of Syria peace talks brokered by Moscow, Tehran and Ankara, in Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana, on July 4-5, the Russian official concluded.

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SYRIA POLITICS: Turkey Military Says Returned Fire on Kurdish YPG Militants in Syria

SYRIA POLITICS: Turkey Military Says Returned Fire on Kurdish YPG Militants in Syria

Kurds had earlier opened fire on the Turkey-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) militants in the Maranaz area south of the town of Azaz in northern Syria.

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SYRIA POLITICS: US Official Threatens Syria Over ‘Gas Attack Plan’

SYRIA POLITICS: US Official Threatens Syria Over ‘Gas Attack Plan’

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said President Assad and the Syrian military would “pay a heavy price” if they went ahead with the alleged plan.

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