Bashar al-Assad

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Thorn in the Side of 9 US Presidents: the Assads

Marathon negotiations with Bashar al-Assad's father were nicknamed 'bladder diplomacy'

(Newser) - The Assad family has been in power in Syria since a successful coup in 1970, the last of dozens that occurred after the country, which is wedged between Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, and Iraq, had declared sovereignty from France in 1946. Since then, each of nine American presidents has tried... More »

Assad: Chemical Weapons Attack 100% Fabricated by US

In order to justify a US airstrike in response, he says

(Newser) - In a new interview with AFP , Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says the US, "hand-in-glove with the terrorists," "fabricated" the suspected chemical weapons attack that killed at least 87, including many children, in a rebel-held town. The reason for the "fabrication"? The US wanted "a... More »

Eric Trump 'Sure' Ivanka Pushed President to Bomb Syria

He says Trump's daughter isn't afraid to contradict his advisers

(Newser) - How did President Trump go from staunchly opposing any action in Syria to launching an airstrike in a matter of days? His son, Eric Trump, tells the Telegraph he's "sure" the decision has Ivanka Trump's fingerprints all over it. "Ivanka is a mother of three kids... More »

Syria: US Strike Killed 6, Caused 'Significant' Damage

Congress is split, but not along party lines

(Newser) - President Trump's decision to strike a Syrian airbase in retaliation for a chemical attack on civilians has bipartisan support—and bipartisan opposition. House Speaker Paul Ryan and Sens. John McCain and Marco Rubio were joined by Democrats, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, in voicing their support for what... More »

Russia: US Strike on Syria an 'Act of Aggression'

Pentagon says Russian forces were warned

(Newser) - The US hit a Syrian air base with almost 60 Tomahawk missiles early Friday in what President Trump says was a response to a chemical attack on civilians—and what Russia and Syria say was an act of aggression. A spokesman for Vladimir Putin told reporters Friday that Putin considers... More »

Trump Takes 'Responsibility' for Situation in Syria

But again blames Obama for this week's deadly chemical attack

(Newser) - President Trump once again addressed the chemical weapons attack in Syria that left scores dead this week, calling it "heinous," "horrific," and an "affront to humanity" during a joint press conference with Jordanian King Abdullah II on Wednesday. "It crossed a lot of lines... More »

Trump Blames Obama for Syria Chemical Attack

He cites failure to enforce 'red line' after chemical attack

(Newser) - An apparent chemical attack that killed scores of people Tuesday is being called one of the worst atrocities of the Syrian civil war—and President Trump blames his predecessor. The "heinous" actions of the Assad regime "are a consequence of the past administration's weakness and irresolution,"... More »

After 'Successes' by Syrian Army, a Truce

Putin says Russia and Turkey are on board with newly announced ceasefire

(Newser) - The Syrian army has announced a nationwide ceasefire, the AP reports. In a statement carried by state news agency SANA on Thursday, the military command "declares a comprehensive nationwide cessation of hostilities as of midnight." State TV says the ceasefire paves the way for reactivating negotiations to end... More »

Aleppo Evacuees Are Fleeing to Idlib. Now Idlib Is a Target

Syria's Assad expected to go after last rebel stronghold

(Newser) - The evacuation of civilians and anti-government fighters from eastern Aleppo ran into yet another snag Friday, though negotiations were underway to get it back on track, reports Reuters . If it resumes, thousands of people are expected to head west and end up in the Syrian province of Idlib near the... More »

'Always Remember Us': Aleppo Residents Post Final Goodbyes

Reports of more than 80 civilians shot on sight, 'complete meltdown of humanity'

(Newser) - If conditions could get incrementally worse than "barely survivable," they just did in Aleppo, Syria. The human rights arm of the United Nations says that forces supporting the Syrian regime have been entering homes in eastern Aleppo and murdering residents, with one report coming in that 82 civilians... More »

Assad: Winning Back Aleppo Won't Stop the War

Syrian president vows to keep fighting rebels even if his forces liberate war-torn city

(Newser) - President Bashar al-Assad said in comments published Thursday that Syrian forces' victory in the battle for Aleppo will be a "big gain" for his government but that it won't end the country's civil war, the AP reports. Assad, in an interview published in the state-owned newspaper al-Watan,... More »

Civilians Pay the Price With Aleppo Poised to Fall

President Assad's forces on brink of reclaiming city from rebels

(Newser) - Bashar al-Assad's government forces in Syria are poised to reclaim Aleppo, and two weeks of attacks have displaced thousands of residents. Here's a look at developments:
  • The big picture: Aleppo would give Assad control of Syria's five biggest cities, meaning it's likely he's going to
... More »

Syria's President Says This Iconic Photo Is Fake

Interviewer confronts Assad with haunting image

(Newser) - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad apparently believes there's such a big shortage of injured children in his country that people have to forge photos of them. In an interview with a Swiss television station this week, the leader was confronted with a haunting photo of 5-year-old Omran Daqneesh , who was... More »

Syria: Ceasefire Is Over

Fragile peace collapses after multiple violations in 7 days

(Newser) - Syria's military command has declared the US-Russian brokered ceasefire over, blaming the country's rebel groups for undermining the agreement that lasted seven days, reports the AP . In a statement Monday, the Syrian military said that "armed terrorist groups" repeatedly violated the ceasefire that came into effect last... More »

As Syrians Die, UN Aid Flows Through Assad Cronies

Critics say aid money is propping up regime

(Newser) - United Nations aid is making the Syrian civil war a very profitable enterprise for cronies of President Bashar al-Assad, according to a Guardian investigation. The aid—tens of millions of dollars of it, in some cases—has been awarded to hundreds of businesses closely linked to the regime, some of... More »

In Russia's Strikes on Syria, a Surprising First

Bombers take off from Iran

(Newser) - Russia has been dropping bombs on Syria for nearly a year now in its bid to help President Bashar al-Assad win his civil war, but Tuesday marked an important first in the fighting: Russian bombers took off from a base in Iran for strikes on Aleppo and two other provinces.... More »

Assad's Defiant Speech Suggests More Bloodshed in Syria

'We will liberate every inch'

(Newser) - Syria's Bashar al-Assad addressed his country's new parliament on Tuesday, and he sounded very much like a confident ruler with no plans to step down. “Just like we liberated Palmyra and many other areas before it, we are going to liberate each and every inch of Syria... 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 »

Report: US Secretly Tried to Spur a Coup in Syria

Obama administration held secret talks with 'elements of' regime for years

(Newser) - For years, the Obama administration held secret back-channel talks with members of the Syrian regime in the hope of unseating Bashar al-Assad, US and Arab officials tell the Wall Street Journal . The communication came in bursts—sometimes with senior Syrian officials, other times through intermediaries including Russia and Iran. In... More »

UN Syria Plan Leaves Assad's Fate a Mystery

Security Council votes 15-0 to try to end conflict

(Newser) - After years of ruinous civil war, the United Nations Security Council has finally approved a peace deal for what's left of Syria—but it leaves the future of President Bashar Assad a mystery. The resolution adopted by a unanimous vote on Friday says Syria must hold elections within 18... More »

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