Syria Army Celebrates 'Total Recapture' of Damascus

Military in full control for first time since 2011
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 22, 2018 12:30 AM CDT
In this photo released on Sunday, April 22, 2018 by the Syrian official news agency SANA, smoke rises after Syrian government airstrikes and shelling hit the Hajar al-Aswad neighborhood.   (SANA via AP, File)
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(Newser) – Syrian state TV says the military and police forces are celebrating recapturing the last neighborhoods in Damascus that were held by the rebels and ISIS militants. Al-Ikhbariya TV broadcast footage of a ceremonial police motorcade entering the Hajar al-Aswad neighborhood with sirens blaring on Tuesday. The state broadcaster then showed a police ceremony taking place in the neighborhood, much of it left in ruins and rubble from the fighting. Syria's military announced it had recaptured Hajar al-Aswad from ISIS militants on Monday, bringing the entire capital and its suburbs under full government control for the first time since 2011, the AP reports. "Damascus and its surroundings … are completely secure," declared military spokesman Gen. Ali Mayhoub, per the BBC. (Read more Syria stories.)

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