NEWS ABOUT: Syria

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Vaccine Mix-Up Kills Infants Within Hours in Syria

Vaccine may have been mixed with muscle relaxant

(Newser) - At least 15 infants died in northwestern Syria on Tuesday after being administered a measles vaccine that may have been accidentally mixed with an anesthetic. The New York Times reports that the victims reacted within minutes: Recipients experienced a slowed heart rate, wheezing, respiratory failure, and shock, while some swelled... More »

NY Man Was ISIS Recruiter: Federal Indictment

Mufid Elfgeeh also charged with plotting to kill US troops back from Iraq

(Newser) - A man from Rochester, NY, was indicted yesterday on charges of attempting to help three people (two of them FBI informants) travel to Syria to take up arms with ISIS, reports the LA Times . The Justice Department statement further alleges that Mufid Elfgeeh sent $600 to a potential recruit in... More »

How Obama's ISIS Speech Went Over

Mixed reaction to plan to 'degrade and ultimately destroy' terror group

(Newser) - President Obama laid the foundation last night for his strategy to "degrade and ultimately destroy" ISIS, citing possible expanded airstrikes from Iraq into Syria and explaining how these efforts would be different from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. "If you threaten America, you will find no safe... More »

Saudi Arabia 'Full Partner' in Fight Against ISIS

Kingdom to arm, train militant group's foes

(Newser) - Islamic state versus Islamic State: Saudi Arabia has agreed to help step up the fight against ISIS and will host a training camp for moderate Syrian rebels fighting the extremists as well as the Syrian regime, reports the New York Times . A senior Obama administration official says details are still... More »

Obama: I Won't Hesitate to Hit ISIS in Syria

President says US-led coalition will go after militants 'wherever they exist'

(Newser) - In a prime-time address tonight, President Obama laid out the US strategy to "degrade" and "destroy" ISIS, and he made clear that he's ready to expand US airstrikes from Iraq into Syria . The president says a US-led coalition will go after militants from the Islamic State "... More »

Majority of Americans Want to Hit ISIS

Obama poised for speech as poll shows Americans fear new attack

(Newser) - Some six in 10 Americans say they would support a strike against ISIS, as President Obama appears to be moving toward such a hit . The figure comes from an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll that also finds Americans feeling unsafe: Some 47% of the country now feels the US is... More »

ISIS Eyed as Blast Wipes Out Syria Rebel Leaders

Suicide bomber takes out hardline Islamist group

(Newser) - The leadership of a hardline Islamist group battling the Syrian regime has been wiped out by a suicide bomber—and suspicion has fallen on the even more hardline Islamists of ISIS. The blast hit a meeting of Ahrar al-Sham, a powerful member of the Islamic Front rebel coalition, killing leader... More »

Obama: I Can Hit ISIS Without Congressional OK

President appears ready to approve airstrikes in Syria: Washington Post

(Newser) - President Obama will lay out his plan to cripple the Islamic State tomorrow night, and the Washington Post reports that he looks poised to order airstrikes in Syria. That controversial action probably won't come right away, but Obama has met with foreign policy experts and believes he is within... More »

Sotloffs: Steven Sold to ISIS by Other Rebels

Spokesman says family's relationship with White House is 'very strained'

(Newser) - A family spokesman for the family of Steven Sotloff appeared on Anderson Cooper 360 last night and revealed that the location of the journalist had been sold to ISIS by "so-called moderate rebels," leading to Sotloff's capture, CNN reports. "Somebody at the [Syrian] border crossing made... More »

Expert: 12K Foreigners Fighting in Syria

Conflict has drawn fighters from 74 countries

(Newser) - More than 12,000 foreigners from 74 countries have gone to fight with rebels in Syria, 60% to 70% from other Middle Eastern countries and about 20% to 25% from Western nations, a leading expert on terrorism warned yesterday. Prof. Peter Neumann, director of the International Center for the Study... More »

On Deck at NATO Summit: ISIS, Ukraine

World leaders will also discuss the current mission in Afghanistan

(Newser) - A NATO summit today in Wales originally meant to focus on the ongoing Ukraine crisis will shift gears to include high-level discussions on the American- and British-led push to address ISIS, reports the New York Times . President Obama and British PM David Cameron penned a joint letter in the Times ... More »

Sotloff Execution Video Is Real: US

'We will not be intimidated,' Obama says

(Newser) - The US has confirmed the authenticity of an ISIS video featuring journalist Steven Sotloff's beheading , with President Obama asserting that the recent executions only "stiffen our resolve" against the militant group. After intelligence officials analyzed the clip, Obama discussed it today in Estonia, the New York Times reports.... More »

Sotloff Family Grieves After Release of Video

Journalist was aware of Syria dangers, colleagues say

(Newser) - The family of American journalist Steven Sotloff is aware that ISIS has released a video it claims shows his beheading and is "grieving privately," a spokesman says. The State Department says it is "sickened" and is trying to determine whether the video is genuine, reports the AP... More »

Peacekeepers Pull Off 'Greatest Escape' From Syria Militants

They were outnumbered in Golan Heights

(Newser) - Under cover of darkness, 40 Filipino peacekeepers escaped their besieged outpost in the Golan Heights after a seven-hour gunbattle with Syrian rebels, Philippine officials said today. Al-Qaeda-linked insurgents still hold captive 44 Fijian troops .The getaway, combined with the departure of another entrapped group of Filipino troops, marked a major... More »

ISIS Sells Women Into Marriage for $1K Each: Report

The Islamic State considers Yazidi women 'spoils of war': report

(Newser) - The Islamic State has "distributed" about 300 Yazidi women to its jihadist fighters as spoils of war, CNN reports. The Islamic State, or ISIS, kidnapped the women when it attacked Yazidi villages and forced tens of thousands to flee earlier this month, according to a British group monitoring the... More »

British PM Raises UK Threat Level to 'Severe'

Government thinks attack by extremists is 'highly likely'

(Newser) - David Cameron changed the UK threat level from "substantial" to "severe"—its second-highest level—and outlined measures the British government is taking to combat terrorism at a press conference today in London, reports the BBC . On the heels of the execution of James Foley and other disturbing... More »

44 Fiji Peacekeepers Captured by Syria Rebels

Militants force members of UN mission from Golan Heights post, also trap Filipino troops

(Newser) - The UN says that 44 of its Fijian peacekeeping troops have been captured by militants in Syria, while 75 of its Filipino peacekeepers are surrounded by insurgents who want them to surrender their weapons, reports the AP . All of the soldiers are said to be alive, and leaders from both... More »

US: Dozen Americans Fighting for ISIS

Abdirahmaan Muhumed named as 2nd slain US fighter

(Newser) - ISIS has stunned the world with its brutality and rapid advance in recent months—and the publicity has also attracted more foreign fighters, including around a dozen Americans that US intelligence services have been able to identify, officials say. The recruits—who seem to be getting younger—see the militants... More »

ISIS Claims It's on an Execution Spree in Syria

Rights group says up to 65 soldiers slaughtered; militants say 200

(Newser) - The Islamic State group has killed dozens of Syrian soldiers it captured after overrunning a military base in northeastern Syria, shooting some and using knives on others in the latest brutal mass killing attributed to the extremists, activists said today. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the militants rounded... More »

Journo Thanks 'Big-Hearted' People Who Won His Release

Peter Theo Curtis says he's 'overwhelmed' to learn about efforts

(Newser) - American journalist Peter Theo Curtis, recently back on US soil , said in his first public remarks today that he was overwhelmed by the people who were behind efforts to secure his release from al-Nusra Front. Curtis, who was freed Sunday after 22 months in captivity, wore sandals and a gray... More »

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