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UPDATES – Syria, Israel trade blames over latest airstrike

Syria’s air defenses on Monday intercepted ‘hostile targets’ above Damascus’ southwestern countryside, state media reported. No details were immediately available and there were no initial reports of damage or casualties. UPDATE Israeli aircraft attacked targets in Syria on Monday, the military said, describing the strikes as retaliation for an attempted …

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Israel targets armed band on Golan border

The Israeli army on Monday said it targeted a group of four people who had planted explosives along the border fence with Syria on the Golan Heights. Soldiers spotted the group near a frontier outpost overnight and, backed by air support, “fired simultaneously towards the squad of four terrorists, a …

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Rami Makhlouf exposes double dealings for Assad regime

Syrian businessman Rami Makhlouf revealed on Sunday he had set up a web of offshore front companies to help President Bashar al Assad evade Western sanctions, in a social media post blasting the government for investigating his business empire. One of Syria’s richest and most powerful businessmen, Makhlouf said security …

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Israeli helicopter strikes on Syrian outposts

The Israeli military on Friday said its helicopters struck Syrian army targets in response to mortars fired toward the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. “A number of targets were struck, including SAF observation posts and intelligence collection systems located in SAF bases,” the military said in a statement, referring to the Syrian …

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The fate of 9 million Syrian refugees still unclear

The majority of displaced Syrians want to go home but unless conditions improve, few will risk returning to their war-torn country, a grassroots civil rights organisation says. In a report released on July 21, the Syrian Association for Citizens’ Dignity said the longer Syrians felt unable to return, the more …

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Syria thwarts Israeli airstrike on Damascus

Syrian air defenses on Monday intercepted a new Israeli “aggression” above the capital Damascus, state media said, in the latest wave of attacks that Western intelligence sources have said were Israeli strikes on a major Iranian-backed ammunition depot on the edge of the capital. State television said Israeli missiles had …

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Syria defies war, corona for parliamentary elections

Syria held a parliamentary election on Sunday, gripped by a collapsing economy and new U.S. sanctions after President Bashar al-Assad clawed back control of most of the country. People voted across government territory at more than 7,000 polling stations, including for the first time in former rebel bastions that the …

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UN succeeds in renewing Syria crossborder aid

The United Nations Security Council on Saturday approved aid deliveries to Syria through one border crossing from Turkey, a day after its authorization for the six-year-long humanitarian operation ended, leaving millions of Syrian civilians in limbo. The United Nations describes the aid delivered from Turkey as a “lifeline” for Syrians …

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Turkish soldiers killed by Kurds on Syrian border

A bomb attack by the Kurdish YPG militia killed six people and wounded 11 on Tuesday in the northeastern Syrian town of Tel Abyad, near the Turkish border, the Turkish Defence Ministry said. The Arab town, from which Turkish-backed forces last October pushed out the YPG militia in a major …

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Iran weighs options in Syria after the Caesar Act

The US Treasury imposed mandatory sanctions on Syria on June 17, targeting foreign persons and entities for economic activities that support the Syrian government’s ability to wage war. The Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act targets beneficiaries of the Syrian conflict including Iran, and signals that the United States will not …

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Rouhani wants US out of Syria, period

The illegitimate presence of U.S. forces in Syria should end immediately, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan in a video conference broadcast on Iranian state TV on Wednesday. Iran would continue its support for Syria’s legal government, Rouhani said. Source: Reuters

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New Quds Force leader in Syria

The commander of Iran’s elite Quds force visited Eastern Syria in the past few days, and accused the United States and Israel of conspiring to support the Islamic State group, the semi-official Iranian news agency Tasnim reported. “Given that the existence of this group (Islamic State) is managed by the …

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Syria, Libya on afterburner of Russo, Turkish talks

Russia and Turkey have postponed ministerial-level talks which were expected to focus on Libya and Syria, where the two countries support opposing sides in long-standing conflicts. Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov decided to put off the talks during a phone call on Sunday, the …

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Russian MiGs headed to Syria

Russia flew a batch of advanced MiG-29 fighter jets to Syria, Moscow’s embassy in Damascus said, with Syrian pilots already using the planes to conduct missions within the country’s airspace. President Vladimir Putin last week ordered Russia’s foreign and defence ministries to hold talks with its close ally, Syria, to …

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Putin expanding naval presence with new Syria deals

President Vladimir Putin has ordered Russia’s defence and foreign ministries to hold talks with Syria for Moscow to obtain additional facilities and maritime access in Syria, the Interfax news agency cited a government resolution as saying on Friday. Russia has two permanent military facilities in Syria, an air base in …

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Syria blocks Israeli missile attack on Halab

Syrian air defences thwarted an Israeli missile attack on a research centre and a military base in the northern province of Aleppo state media said on Monday in the fifth such strikes in two weeks on suspected Iranian targets. The Syrian army said in a statement that Israel hit military …

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Syrian regime turns on its business allies

Sanctions-hit Syrian tycoon Rami Makhlouf on Sunday said that security forces were arresting employees at his diversified companies in what he said was “mounting pressure” on him days after Syrian authorities asked him to pay hefty taxes. Makhlouf, a maternal cousin of President Bashar al-Assad and widely considered part of …

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Israeli helicopter strike on Syria

Israeli helicopters fired several rockets from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights on targets inside southern Syria, Syrian state media reported on Friday, the latest in what intelligence sources say is an increase of strikes against Iranian-backed militias. Opposition sources in the area said several militia posts near Quneitra were targeted in …

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