Tag Archives: Syria

After defeat in Iraq, IS fights on in last enclave in Syria

After defeat in Iraq, IS fights on in last enclave in SyriaBAGHDAD (AP) — A year after it was routed from Iraq in a devastating war that left entire neighborhoods and towns in ruins, the Islamic State group is fighting to hang on to its last enclave in eastern Syria, engaging in deadly battles with U.S.-backed forces.



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Israel bombs Syria in 'first strike' since air defences were upgraded

Israel bombs Syria in 'first strike' since air defences were upgradedIsrael struck several positions south of Damascus in the first strikes since Syrian air defences were upgraded following the accidental downing of a Russian plane in September, a war monitor said Friday. Damascus claimed its air defence systems shot down all "hostile targets" late Thursday. Israel did not confirm carrying out raids but denied any losses. According to the Syria Observatory for Human Rights, the strikes hit two positions in the south of Damascus province, including an area believed to be an Iranian weapons depot near the capital. "Israeli forces bombarded for an hour," Observatory chief Rami Abdel Rahman said. Two missiles hit "weapons depots belonging to the Lebanese Hezbollah (militant group) as well as Iranian forces" in Kisweh. Another missile hit the area of Harfa, where there is a Syrian military base, the Britain-based monitor said. In Kisweh, "the depots that were targeted are used to temporarily store rockets until they are taken somewhere else," Abdel Rahman said. "It appears the Israelis had intelligence that weapons had arrived there recently," he said. The state news agency said the attack was foiled and did not admit to any losses. "Our air defences fired on hostile targets over the Kisweh area and downed them," SANA said, citing a military source. A military source quoted by the pro-government Al-Watan daily said "the aggression, despite its intensity, was not able to implement any of its goals and all enemy bodies were downed." Initial reports by the Observatory suggested there were no casualties. The Israeli military denied any of its assets were hit but stopped short of denying it had conducted strikes at all. "Reports regarding an IDF (Israeli military) aircraft or an airborne IDF target having been hit are false," it said in an English-language statement. It said a Syrian surface-to-air missile was fired in the direction of an open area of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights but it was unclear if it had hit Israeli-held territory.



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The Latest: Syria says air defenses confront 'enemy targets'

The Latest: Syria says air defenses confront 'enemy targets'BEIRUT (AP) — The Latest on developments in and related to Syria (all times local):



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Report says Syria shot down Israeli war plane but Israel denies it

Report says Syria shot down Israeli war plane but Israel denies itSyria’s air defense forces shot down an Israeli war plane and four missiles on Thursday, Russia’s RIA news agency said citing a Syrian security source, but Israel’s military said the report was bogus. The area where the incident is said to have occurred is where Hezbollah, a group backed by Iran, has its communications and logistics hub for southern Syria near the Israeli border, according to two senior regional intelligence sources. Israel is concerned that Iran’s growing presence in Syria poses a threat to its own security and has struck dozens of Iranian and Iran-backed positions in Syria over the course of the country’s seven-year conflict.



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Syria state TV says air defenses repelled missile attack

Syria state TV says air defenses repelled missile attackDAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syria's air defenses confronted an aerial "aggression" over the country's south late Thursday, shooting down several targets and preventing them from carrying out their mission in the first such attack since Syria received a Russian air defense system last month, state TV said.



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Syria regime and rebels swap prisoners, Turkey says

Syria regime and rebels swap prisoners, Turkey saysThe Syrian government and rebels swapped prisoners Saturday in a “first important step” in building trust between the warring sides under a Russia-Iran-Turkey-brokered peace process, Turkey’s foreign ministry said Saturday. “Certain individuals” were exchanged simultaneously in northwest of Syria, near the town of Al-Bab close to Aleppo, the ministry said, calling it a “pilot project”. While it did not give a precise figure of detainees involved, the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which relies on sources in Syria, said 10 prisoners from each side were exchanged.



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Israel has struck in Syria since Russia plane downed: Israeli official

Israel has struck in Syria since Russia plane downed: Israeli officialIsrael has carried out attacks in Syria since the accidental shooting down of a Russian surveillance plane last month, a senior Israeli official said on Monday. The Sept. 17 downing by Syrian anti-aircraft fire, after Israeli jets attacked a suspected Iranian arms shipment to Syria, caused a diplomatic rift between Israel and Russia, and Moscow blamed Israel for the incident.



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After Gaza strikes, Israel threatens Iranian forces in Syria

After Gaza strikes, Israel threatens Iranian forces in SyriaGAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Palestinian militants ceased rocket attacks from Gaza into Israel and relative calm prevailed Saturday afternoon after a night-long exchange of fire that prompted Israeli threats against Iranian forces in Syria.



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Four-nation Syria summit calls for lasting Idlib ceasefire

Four-nation Syria summit calls for lasting Idlib ceasefireA joint statement adopted at the end of a major summit in Istanbul said the countries were committed to working “together in order to create conditions for peace and stability in Syria”. It also “stressed the importance of a lasting ceasefire” in Idlib, while hailing “progress” following a deal last month between Syrian-regime supporter Russia and rebel-backer Turkey to create a buffer zone around the northwestern province.



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Syria ordered Gaza rocket fire at Israel with Iran backing: army

Syria ordered Gaza rocket fire at Israel with Iran backing: armyThe Israeli army accused the Syrian government Saturday of instructing a Palestinian militant group to fire dozens of rockets at Israel from Gaza with Iran’s supported and vowed to respond where it chose. “The rockets that were launched against Israel… we know that the orders, incentives were given from Damascus with the clear involvement of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force,” army spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Conricus said, referring to the Guards’ foreign operations unit. At least 39 rockets have been fired at southern Israel by the Islamic Jihad group since late Friday, with 17 of them intercepted by the Iron Dome air defence system, and the rest hitting open fields, the army said.



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