Syria

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Aleppo's Last Pediatrician Killed in Airstrikes

At least 27 dead in nighttime attack

(Newser) - A wave of overnight airstrikes hit a hospital in Syria supported by Doctors Without Borders and nearby buildings in the rebel-held part of the contested city of Aleppo, killing at least 27 people. The strikes hit the well-known al-Quds field hospital, according to opposition activists and rescue workers, and the... More »

Obama Sending 250 Troops to Syria to Fight ISIS

He wants Special Forces additions to keep up 'momentum'

(Newser) - Last week, President Obama announced the US is sending more than 200 additional troops to Iraq to help fight ISIS, and Monday he made a similar declaration regarding Syria, Reuters reports. "Given the success, I've approved the deployment of up to 250 additional US personnel in Syria, including... More »

US Sending Choppers, 200 Troops to ISIS Fight

American troops will now be closer to the front lines

(Newser) - The US will deploy more than 200 additional troops to Iraq—upping the number from 3,870 to 4,087—and send Apache helicopters for the first time into the fight against ISIS in Iraq, the first major increase in US forces in nearly a year. The uptick in US... More »

ISIS Frees Most of 300 Abducted Cement Workers, Kills 4

The 4 killed were members of a minority Muslim sect

(Newser) - ISIS has released most of the 300 cement workers it abducted near Damascus after questioning them to find out who were Muslims and killing four who were members of the minority Druze sect, the AP reports. Reports of their release came two days after ISIS abducted the cement workers and... More »

Report: ISIS Kidnaps 300 Workers in Syria

No word yet on fate of employees from cement plant

(Newser) - In a brazen assault near the Syrian capital, Islamic State militants on Thursday abducted 300 cement workers and contractors in an area northeast of Damascus, reports the AP , citing Syrian state TV reports. The mass abduction from the al-Badia Cement Company took place in Dumeir, an area where militants launched... More »

Children Found in Mass Grave Left by ISIS in Palmyra

The grave contained 42 bodies of soldiers and civilians

(Newser) - After recapturing the city of Palmyra from ISIS, Syrian troops discovered a mass grave containing the bodies of dozens of men, women, and children who had been decapitated or shot, AFP reports. The city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its ancient ruins, was captured by ISIS last May.... More »

ISIS Driven Out of Palmyra

Syrian forces now combing historic city for booby traps

(Newser) - Syrian government forces backed by Russian airstrikes drove Islamic State fighters from Palmyra on Sunday, reports the AP , ending the group's 10-month reign of terror over a town whose famed 2,000-year-old ruins once drew tens of thousands of visitors each year. Government forces had been on the offensive... More »

Syrian Forces Battle ISIS In Ancient Palmyra

They've reportedly taken back 3 neighborhoods held by ISIS since May

(Newser) - Syrian government forces have seized three neighborhoods inside Palmyra, a town with famed Roman-era ruins that fell to ISIS last May, state media reported Saturday. According to the AP , Syrian troops and allied militiamen backed by Russian airstrikes have taken up positions in the modern part of town. Palmyra, affectionately... More »

Russian Soldier Reportedly Calls In Airstrike on Himself

'He was discovered and surrounded by terrorists'

(Newser) - A Russian special forces soldier appears to have pulled a move straight out of an action movie, calling down an airstrike on himself after he was discovered by ISIS troops in Syria, Reuters reports. According to AFP , the soldier was on a week-long mission identifying ISIS targets and passing the... More »

Syria Poised to Retake Ancient Town From ISIS

Militants have already destroyed relics in Palmyra

(Newser) - Syrian government forces backed by Russian airstrikes pushed Thursday into the ancient town of Palmyra, which has been held by the Islamic State group since May, state TV reported. The advance came after the troops managed this week to capture several hills and high ground around the town, famed for... More »

Putin Pulling Russian Troops From Syria

Mission 'generally accomplished'

(Newser) - Surprise, surprise: Vladimir Putin is pulling most of his troops out of Syria with his own version of "mission accomplished":
  • “I consider the objectives that have been set for the Defense Ministry to be generally accomplished," he said Monday, per RT.com . "That is why I
... More »

Germany Nabs List of 22K Suspected ISIS Fighters

Potential 'law enforcement gold mine' reveals recruits from at least 50 countries

(Newser) - Germany is in possession of what one expert tells the BBC could be a "law enforcement gold mine": an apparent list of 22,000 or so foreigners from about 50 countries—including "a handful of Americans," per the Guardian —who headed to Syria to fight for... More »

US: Strike Killed ISIS 'Minister of War'

Omar the Chechen was 'battle-tested' leader, Pentagon says

(Newser) - ISIS honcho Omar the Chechen—also known as Abu Omar al-Shishani and Tarkhan Batirashvili—was almost certainly killed alongside a dozen fighters in an American airstrike in Syria last week, US officials say. The Georgian national, whose red beard and willingness to appear in videos made him one of the... More »

'Last American in Damascus': I Will Never Leave Syria

Thomas Webber has lived there for 40 years, loves it, and says they'll have to carry him out

(Newser) - Thomas Webber stoops to check his car for bombs every morning before heading out, but the 71-year-old American has no plans to leave Damascus, a city he has called home for more than four decades, the AP reports. He's one of the very few Americans not of Syrian origin... More »

Nanny Says Beheading Girl, 4, Was Revenge on Putin

Gulchekhra Bobokulova says she is angry at Putin for Syria airstrikes

(Newser) - A nanny from Uzbekistan accused of decapitating a 4-year-old girl and brandishing her head outside a Moscow subway station said during an apparent interrogation captured on video that the killing was an act of revenge against President Vladimir Putin for Russian airstrikes in Syria. Gulchekhra Bobokulova, 38, was detained in... More »

ISIS' Finances Have Taken a Beating

Militants missing energy drinks, Snickers bars

(Newser) - Faced with a cash shortage, the Islamic State has slashed salaries in its so-called caliphate, asked Raqqa residents to pay utility bills in black market American dollars, and is now releasing detainees for $500 each, reports the AP . The extremists who once bragged about minting their own currency are having... More »

Missiles Hit Syrian Hospitals, Killing 23—But Was It Russia?

Doctors Without Borders says it's either Russia or Syria

(Newser) - Rebel-held Syrian towns took missile fire Monday and saw at least 23 civilians die in a school and three hospitals—blood that some say is on Russia's hands, Reuters reports. Azaz, a town near Turkey, took the brunt when airstrikes killed 14 at a children's hospital and a... More »

After 5 Brutal Years, Glimmer of Hope for Syria

But it doesn't include ISIS, Nusra Front

(Newser) - After five brutal and unrelenting years of civil war, there may finally be a glimmer of hope for Syria—or what's left of it. After extensive talks in Munich, world powers have agreed upon what they refer to as a "cessation of hostilities" between the regime and rebels... More »

1 in 10 Syrians Killed, Wounded During War

Human life, infrastructure, and economy have been 'obliterated'

(Newser) - A recent United Nations report that warned the Assad regime is "exterminating" civilians in Syria at alarming rates is an understatement compared to a new report from the Syrian Center for Policy Research. While other UN numbers, which the group stopped collecting in mid-2015, indicated at least 250,000... More »

Russia Wants Syria Ceasefire on March 1

The US wants one now

(Newser) - Russia has proposed a March 1 ceasefire in Syria, US officials say, but Washington believes Moscow is giving itself and the Syrian government three weeks to try to crush moderate rebel groups. The United States has countered with demands for the fighting to stop immediately, officials say. The talk of... More »

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