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Syrian army captures water station supplying Aleppo from Iٍ

The Levant News – The Syrian army and its allies have captured the main water pumping station that supplies Aleppo in a sweeping advance against Islamic State that has brought them to the bank of the Euphrates, a group that monitors the conflict said on Tuesday. The Syrian Observatory for …

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Turkey’s intervention in Syria from Syrian perspective

THE LEVANT NEWS EXCLUSIVE – By Niazy G. Atay* – Turkey’s involvement in the Syrian crisis expanded to military action with the Operation Euphrates Shield (OES), initiated on 24 August. Hotly-debated issue of Turkey’s intervention to Syria at international and domestic levels came into existence following the reconciliation with Russia …

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Elite Iraqi troops battle ISIS on Mosul streets

MOSUL, Iraq: Elite Iraqi troops battled ISIS in the streets of Mosul Friday as U.S.-backed forces in Syria pressed an advance on extremist bastion Raqqa after a sandstorm eased. The high winds in the desert which separates the Syrian Kurdish-Arab militia alliance from the extremists’ stronghold in the Euphrates Valley …

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What are the humanitarian needs in wake of Mosul offensive?

By Lin Taylor for Reuters – Iraqi government forces, with air and ground support from the U.S.-led coalition, launched an offensive on Monday to drive Islamic State from the northern city of Mosul, the militants’ last major stronghold in the country. The United States predicted Islamic State would suffer”a lasting …

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China Is Supporting Syria’s Regime. What Changed?

By Michael Clarke and Raffaello Pantucci for The National Interest — On August 14, Guan Youfei, a rear admiral in China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy, visited the Syrian capital of Damascus, escorted around the city under heavy guard. Guan’s visit reportedly included meetings with senior military officials and Russian officers, …

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Lebanon foils two ISIS-planned attacks

BEIRUT: The Lebanese Army says it has foiled two terror attacks that ISIS was planning to carry out at a tourist site as well as a crowded residential area. The army’s announcement comes on the wake of a series of suicide bombings in the country’s northeastern border village of Al-Qaa …

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Belgian police alerted to IS fighters en route to Europe

BY PHILIP BLENKINSOP for REUTERS — Belgian police have received an anti-terror alert warning that a group of Islamic State fighters recently left Syria en route for Europe planning attacks in Belgium and France, a Belgian security source said on Wednesday. The Belgian crisis center in charge of coordinating security …

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ISIS: The full story

By Jim Muir for BBC News — Image copyrightAlamy Abu Anis only realised something unusual was happening when he heard the sound of explosions coming from the old city on the western bank of the Tigris as it runs through Mosul. “I phoned some friends over there, and they said armed …

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Is the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization or a firewall against violent extremism?

THE LEVANT NEWS — By​ ​ Marc Lynch* — The House Judiciary Committee recently passed a resolution calling on the State Department to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization. This resolution resonates with the feverish anti-Islamic politics of the Republican primary, fueled across the spectrum by candidates from Donald …

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Who Wants Change Any More?

The Levant News — By Graham E. Fuller — A renowned Arab religious scholar in the 14th century, ibn Taymiyya, is sometimes quoted as saying, Al-zulm afdal min al-fawda— “oppression is to be favored over anarchy.” Although ibn Taiymiyya was no establishment figure in his time, this perspective was welcomed …

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Pakistan arrests local ISIS commander

Reuters – Pakistani security forces have arrested a man they believe is the commander of the Islamic State group(ISIS) in the country as well as two accomplices involved in recruiting and sending fighters to Syria, intelligence sources said on Wednesday. Authorities in South Asia are concerned about the rise of …

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Lebanon detains wife of Islamic State leader

Reuters – The Lebanese army detained a wife and daughter of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as they crossed fromSyria nine days ago, security officials said on Tuesday, in a move seen as likely to put pressure on the Islamist chief. The woman was identified as Saja al-Dulaimi, an …

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Assad says “real cooperation” needed to crush IS

THE LEVANT – Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said on Thursday that “international cooperation” was necessary to crush the Islamic State group, which is the target of a US-led campaign. “The region is going through decisive times” and the most important factor in determining the outcome is whether there is “real …

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Some Kurds would have joined Daash

THE LEVANT – Ethnic Kurds are helping members of the Islamic State group in the battle for the key Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani, sharing their knowledge of the local terrain and language with the extremists, according to Iraqi and Kurdish officials. It is not clear how many Kurds are …

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Isis seeks manager for ailing oil plant

THE LEVANT – For one daring and zealous oilman, the jihadists of Islamic State are offering the job opportunity of a lifetime. After a string of fatal accidents at Iraqi oilfields seized by Isis in June, the Islamists are seeking a manager to run their refineries and arrest the slump …

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Islamic State kills 50 Iraqis

THE LEVANT  – Islamic State group extremists lined up and shot dead at least 50 Iraqi men, women and children from the same tribe on Sunday, officials said, in the latest targeting of the group by militants. The killings, all committed in public, raise the death toll suffered by the …

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