Syria war - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Syria war


Syria war records lowest monthly death toll in 9 years

Apr 01, 2020 - 10:56 PM

Of the total deaths, some 51 people were killed in shelling and air strikes by the Syrian regime, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says

SYRIA WAR. Displaced Syrian children walk at a school that was reportedly targeted in a regime forces' air strike in Syria's northwestern Idlib province on March 3, 2020 near the town of Adwan. File photo by Ibrahim Yasouf/AFP

Iranian commander killed near Damascus – monitor

Mar 07, 2020 - 10:54 PM

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights calls the death of Farhad Dabirian, a commander in Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, an 'assassination'

First civilian flight since 2012 lands in Aleppo

Feb 19, 2020 - 8:27 PM

The flight comes days after the government announced it had wrested the entire region around the second city of Aleppo back from jihadists and their rebel allies

FIRST CIVILIAN FLIGHT. The cockpit of the plane that carried out a flight from the Syrian capital Damascus to Aleppo is pictured upon the plane's arrival at the airport of the northern city that reopened today for the first time since the war forced its closure in 2012. Photo by Louai Beshara/AFP

Russia warns against Turkey operation in Syria

Feb 19, 2020 - 6:42 PM

(UPDATED) President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has threatened to launch an operation in Idlib by the end of the month if Damascus fails to withdraw its troops behind Turkish military positions

WARNING. Turkish military M60T tanks drive through the village of Matarim in the south of Syria's northwestern province of Idlib, near the M4 motorway that connects Aleppo with Latakia, on February 17, 2020. File photo by Omar Haj Kadour/AFP

Turkey, Russia trade accusations as Syria tensions rise

Feb 12, 2020 - 6:13 PM

(UPDATED) Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatens to strike Syrian regime forces 'everywhere' if his soldiers come under renewed attack

TENSION. Syrian government forces deploy near the Damascus-Aleppo highway in the southern part of Syria's northern Aleppo province on February 10, 2020. AFP file photo

Idlib displacement worst since start of Syria war – U.N.

Feb 11, 2020 - 9:23 PM

'In just 10 weeks, since 1 December, some 690,000 people have been displaced from their homes in Idlib and surrounding areas,' says the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

INTERNALLY DISPLACED. A truck loaded with a family's belongings drives on the outskirts of the town of Deir Ballut as Syrians fleeing air strikes by pro-regime forces on rebel-held areas of the Idlib province head toward safer zones near the Turkish border, on February 6, 2020. File photo by Rami al Sayed/AFP

Syria regime must halt 'escalation of violence' – EU

Dec 29, 2019 - 8:00 PM

'All parties have the obligation to protect civilians. The regime and its allies must cease indiscriminate military attacks and respect international humanitarian law,' says the European Union

U.N. chief announces creation of constitutional committee on Syria

Sep 23, 2019 - 11:09 PM

The committee is to include 150 members – a third picked by the regime, another by the opposition, and the remaining third by the United Nations

TALKS. A handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) shows Syria's Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem (C-R) meeting with United Nations special envoy to Syria Geir Pedersen(C-L) in the Syrian capital Damascus on September 23, 2019. AFP PHOTO / HO / SANA

Putin, Erdogan to 'activate' cooperation on Syria – Kremlin

Aug 23, 2019 - 8:44 PM

Turkey and Russia back opposing sides in the Syrian conflict but have worked closely, along with Iran, to find a political solution for Syria

SYRIA WAR. In this file photo, Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan answer journalists' questions during a press conference in Konstantinovsky Palace outside Saint Petersburg on August 9, 2016. File photo by Alexander Nemenov/AFP

Damascus to let civilians flee rebel-held Idlib

Aug 22, 2019 - 7:47 PM

The Idlib region, which sits on the Turkish border, is now the last major stronghold of opposition to the Russia-backed government of President Bashar al-Assad

OPEN. Syrian civilians flee on August 21, 2019 a conflict zone in Syria's rebel-held northwestern region of Idlib, where government bombardment has killed hundreds since late April. Photo by Omar Haj Kadour/AFP

Syria force combs last ISIS hideouts in Baghouz

Mar 21, 2019 - 11:24 PM

Syrian Democratic Forces spokesman Mustefa Bali says a victory announcement would be premature

LAST JIHADISTS. Smoke rises in the Islamic State group's last remaining position on the eastern banks of the Euphrates River (C) in the village of Baghouz during battles with the Syrian Democratic Forces, in the countryside of the eastern Syrian province of Deir Ezzor, on March 18, 2019. Photo by Delil Souleiman/AFP

Syria force to pluck more civilians from last ISIS pocket

Feb 23, 2019 - 8:52 PM

'God had promised us a caliphate and we went to it. I feel there will be no victory although they (jihadists) tell us victory is near,' says a Syrian woman who is a wife of a deceased ISIS fighter

LAST HOLDOUT. Men suspected of being Islamic State fighters wait to be searched by members of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) after leaving the IS group's last holdout of Baghouz, in Syria's northern Deir Ezzor province on February 22, 2019. Photo by Bulent Kilic/AFP

Turkey expects creation of Syria 'security zone' in 'few months'

Jan 25, 2019 - 11:01 PM

'We expect the promise of a security zone, a buffer zone aimed at protecting our country from terrorists to be fulfilled in few months,' says President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

SYRIA. This file photo shows Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addressing members of parliament of his ruling AK Party during a meeting at the Turkish parliament in Ankara, on October 16, 2018. File photo by Adem Altan/AFP

2018 death toll Syria war's lowest at under 20,000 – monitor

Dec 31, 2018 - 8:24 PM

(UPDATED) The war in Syria leaves 19,666 people dead in 2018, the lowest in nearly 8 years

ONGOING WAR. A picture taken early on March 23, 2018 shows flames erupting following regime bombardment in Douma, one of the few remaining rebel-held pockets in Eastern Ghouta on the outskirts of the capital Damascus. File Photo by Hamza Al-Ajweh/ AFP

Pompeo to meet Netanyahu in Brazil after Syria decision

Dec 28, 2018 - 9:35 AM

The meeting comes at the heels of US President Donald Trump's announcement that he would bring home all 2,000 American troops from Syria

DIPLOMACY TALKS. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is set to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Brazil. Photos by AFP

U.N. wants Syria to account for war dead, detainees

Nov 29, 2018 - 4:07 PM

The UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria says it is crucial to push the Syrian government to give a full account after it began in May to release death notifications

SYRIA WAR. A Syrian man carries an infant injured in government bombing in the rebel-held town of Hamouria, in the besieged Eastern Ghouta region on the outskirts of the capital Damascus, on February 19, 2018. File photo by Abdulmonam Eassa/AFP

China, Russia denounce 'blackmail' as rift with U.S. exposed at UN

Sep 29, 2018 - 10:19 AM

The United States' relations with China and Russia continue to plummet amid President Donald Trump's accusations against the two countries

8 south Syria towns return to regime control under deals – monitor

Jun 30, 2018 - 10:24 PM

The agreements for the 8 towns are reached even as regime air strikes on Saturday pounded other opposition holdouts

UNREST. Syrian government forces' soldiers hold their weapons at the back of a pick-up truck during a government guided tour in the village of al-Sourah, province of Daraa, on June 29, 2018. Photo by Youssef Karwashan/AFP

UN chief appeals for end to fighting in south Syria

Jun 23, 2018 - 11:19 AM

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls for a return to ceasefire arrangements agreed by Russia, the United States and Jordan

SYRIA BOMBARDMENT. A Syrian man carries an infant injured in government bombing in the rebel-held town of Hamouria, in the besieged Eastern Ghouta region on the outskirts of the capital Damascus, on February 19, 2018. File photo by Abdulmonam Eassa/AFP

U.S.-led strike hits regime positions in east Syria – state media

May 24, 2018 - 2:49 PM

'Some of our military positions between Albu Kamal and Hmeimeh were hit this morning in an aggression by American coalition warplanes,' a military source says

Blasts shake Damascus as U.S. and allies launch Syria strikes

Apr 14, 2018 - 6:18 PM

As dawn broke, plumes of smoke can be seen rising from the city's north and east

STRIKES. A photo released early on April 14, 2018 on the website of the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) shows an explosion on the outskirts of Damascus after Western strikes reportedly hit Syrian military bases and chemical research centres in and around the capital. Photo by HANDOUT / STR / SANA / AFP

Russia says 'no victims' among Syrian civilians, military

Apr 14, 2018 - 5:12 PM

The Russian military says that 103 cruise missiles were fired including Tomahawk missiles but that Syrian air defense systems managed to intercept 71 cruise missiles

STRIKES. A photo released early on April 14, 2018 on the website of the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) shows an explosion on the outskirts of Damascus after Western strikes reportedly hit Syrian military bases and chemical research centres in and around the capital. Photo by HANDOUT / STR / SANA / AFP

U.S. takes aim at Russia over alleged Syria chemical attack

Apr 08, 2018 - 1:55 PM

The US State Department says Russia, 'with its unwavering support' for the Syrian regime, would be ultimately responsible

A handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) on April 7, 2018, shows a wounded woman arriving at a hospital in the Syrian capital Damascus, after rockets fired from Douma killed at least four civilians in various neighbourhoods across the capital. / AFP PHOTO / SANA AND AFP PHOTO / STRINGER / == RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / HO / SANA" - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS ==

Fresh raids pound Syria's rebel Douma after talks falter

Apr 07, 2018 - 3:04 PM

(3rd UPDATE) Forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad are accused of using 'poisonous chlorine gas,' but state media says these allegations are rebel 'fabrications'

First rebels leave Syria enclave under Russian-brokered deal

Mar 23, 2018 - 9:06 AM

(UPDATED) It comes as a spokesman for the Faylaq al-Rahman rebel group in the southern rebel pocket of Ghouta announces that 'agreement has been reached for a ceasefire, through the auspices of the United Nations'

EVACUATION. Syrian civilians gather outside a vehicle during an evacuation by the Syrian Red Crescent in the rebel-held Eastern Ghouta enclave on the outskirts of the capital Damascus on March 22, 2018, on their way to the government controlled Wafidin crossing. Photo by Hamza Al-Ajweh/AFP

Syria regime pummels besieged Eastern Ghouta

Mar 09, 2018 - 11:01 AM

More than 930 civilians have been killed in the nearly 3-week assault on the last rebel enclave outside the capital, where dozens suffered overnight from a suspected chlorine attack

SYRIA. Members of the Syrian government forces occupy a lookout position on the front-line with the rebel-held Eastern Ghouta enclave near its southern town of Jisreen on the eastern outskirts of the capital Damascus on March 8, 2018. Photo by Louai Beshara/AFP

Aid convoy quits Syria enclave as regime presses onslaught

Mar 06, 2018 - 11:56 AM

Dozens of United Nations trucks reach the main town of Douma, the first aid convoy to arrive since a bloody Russian-backed assault began more than two weeks ago

AID FOR SYRIANS. Displaced Syrians wait to receive aid from Russian soldiers as they return to their villages in the area of Abu al-Duhur on March 4, 2018. Photo by George Ourfalian/AFP

The week in photos: February 17-23, 2018

Feb 24, 2018 - 2:21 PM

This week's selection of photo highlights here and around the world

A cow is prepared for a photo shooting during the 45th edition of the Show of the Best" (Schau der Besten) dairy cow beauty pageant on February 22, 2018 in Verden an der Aller, northwestern Germany. / AFP PHOTO / dpa / Carmen Jaspersen / Germany OUT

11 Turkish troops killed in deadliest day of Kurdish offensive in Syria

Feb 11, 2018 - 9:54 AM

The fatalities follow Turkey sending troops and launching air strikes against Kurdish militia in Northern Syria

U.S.-backed Israel vows action vs Iran 'entrenchment' in Syria

Feb 11, 2018 - 9:29 AM

The United States supports Israel for its strikes in Syria, blaming Iran for escalating violence in the war-wracked country

FOR ISRAEL'S INTEREST. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a press conference at the prime minister office in Jerusalem. File photo by Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP

UN chief calls for immediate de-escalation in Syria

Feb 11, 2018 - 9:06 AM

'He calls on all to work for an immediate and unconditional de-escalation of violence and exercise restraint,' says UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric

'IMMEDIATE DE-ESCALATION'. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls for the end to violence in war-torn Syria. File photo by Kena Betancur/ AFP

Death toll tops 220 in 4-day regime assault on Syria rebel enclave

Feb 09, 2018 - 12:48 PM

Violence has also flared in eastern Syria on Thursday, February 8, where the US-led coalition says it has killed at least 100 pro-regime fighters to fend off an attack on its Kurdish allies

SYRIA. A wounded man is helped out of the destruction following air strikes in the rebel-held enclave of Arbin in the Eastern Ghouta near Damascus on February 8, 2018. Photo by Abdulmonam Eassa/AFP

Turkey hits Syria Kurd militia again after ground attack threats

Jan 20, 2018 - 6:40 PM

Turkey accuses the YPG of being the Syrian offshoot of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) which has waged a rebellion in the Turkish southeast for more than 3 decades

ERDOGAN. A banner bearing the Turkish flag and a picture of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is seen hanging from a building while Syrians wave rebel flags during a demonstration below in the rebel-held town of Azaz in northern Syria on January 19, 2018, in support of a joint rebel and Turkish military operation against Syrian-Kurdish forces in Afrin. Photo by Nazeer al-Khatib / AFP

Medical evacuations begin from besieged Syria rebel bastion

Dec 27, 2017 - 6:10 PM

Red Crescent official Ahmed al-Saour says 29 seriously ill people were due to be evacuated

EVACUATE. Syrian staff from the International Committee of the Red Cross take part in an evacuation operation in Douma in the eastern Ghouta region on the outskirts of the capital Damascus on December 26, 2017. Photo by ABDULMONAM EASSA/AFP

UN blames Damascus for 'golden opportunity missed' at Syria peace talks

Dec 15, 2017 - 8:42 AM

Staffan de Mistura, UN envoy for Syria, says 'we did not have real negotiations,' blaming in particular the government delegation's apparent lack of interest in discussing anything besides the fight against 'terrorism'

Erdogan, Putin agree joint push to end Syria war

Sep 29, 2017 - 8:41 AM

President Vladimir Putin and Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan have agreed to push for the creation of a 'de-escalation' zone in Syria's key northern province of Idlib, currently controlled by jihadists

Civilians in ISIS-held Raqa under fire 'from all sides' – Amnesty

Aug 24, 2017 - 12:35 PM

Residents trapped in the Syrian city of Raqa face the threat of air strikes and intense artillery fire

Members of an Armenian Christian family who fled from Raqa stand near fighters from the Syriac Military Council (SMC), a Christian unit battling alongside the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces to oust the Islamic State from their Syrian stronghold, on August 8, 2017 in Jazra, a western suburb of Raqa. Sawsan Karapetyan and her family lived years of fear as some of the only Christians in the Islamic State group's Syrian stronghold Raqa, and on August 8, she fled clutching her rosary. They were rescued by Christian fighters participating in the battle to oust IS from Raqa, who brought them to the safety of the western Jazra suburb in the back of a truck.  / AFP PHOTO / Delil souleiman / “The erroneous mention appearing in the metadata of this photo by Delil souleiman has been modified in AFP systems in the following manner: Inserting correct caption instead of the one sent. Please immediately remove the erroneous mention[s] from all your online services and delete it (them) from your servers. If you have been authorized by AFP to distribute it (them) to third parties, please ensure that the same actions are carried out by them. Failure to promptly comply with these instructions will entail liability on your part for any continued or post notification usage. Therefore we thank you very much for all your attention and prompt action. We are sorry for the inconvenience this notification may cause and remain at your disposal for any further information you may require.

U.S.-backed Syria force advances in Raqa, battles for base

Jun 12, 2017 - 1:15 AM

The Syrian Democratic Forces says its fighters had liberated the neighborhood of Al Romaniya on the western front of Raqa

Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) made up of an alliance of Kurdish and Arab fighters, unloaded boxes of ammunition, supplied by the US-led coalition, in a village north of Raqa on June 7, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / DELIL SOULEIMAN

Syria fighting eases as safe zones plan begins – monitor

May 06, 2017 - 6:36 PM

A deal signed to create 4 safe zones takes effect

REBELS. Turkish-backed Syrian rebels dance on a street in the northwestern border town of al-Bab on February 23, 2017 after they fully captured the town from the Islamic State (ISIS) group. Photo by Nazeer al-Khatib/AFP

Russia, Turkey, Iran sign deal to set up Syria safe zones

May 05, 2017 - 10:35 AM

The agreement provides for a ceasefire a ban on all flights rapid deliveries of humanitarian aid to the designated areas and the return of refugees

Human Rights Watch, war on drugs, SWS survey | Midday wRap

Mar 03, 2017 - 2:05 PM

Watch the midday newscast with Margie de Leon

Obama denounces Aleppo 'horror' as evacuation suspended

Dec 17, 2016 - 10:31 AM

UPDATED The world as we speak is united in horror at the savage assault by the Syrian regime and its Russian and Iranian allies on the city of Aleppo says President Barack Obama

An injured Syrian woman from Aleppo reacts as she is being transported from the Syrian side of the Bab al-Hawa border crossing to a hospital in Turkey on December 16, 2016. Photo by Bulent Kilic/AFP

Air raids pound Aleppo as U.S. decries 'war crimes'

Dec 10, 2016 - 3:07 PM

3rd UPDATE Western powers meeting in Paris called for the resumption of peace talks and for civilians to be allowed to leave Aleppo where tens of thousands have already fled a fierce regime offensive

Syrian pro-government forces walks past rubble in old Aleppo's Jdeideh neighbourhood on December 9, 2016. Photo by George Ourfalian/AFP

Russia says Syria army halts Aleppo attacks as rebels cornered

Dec 09, 2016 - 2:09 PM

The UN envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura says talks to end the nearly 6 year war should resume soon

EVACUATION. Syrian residents fleeing the violence gather at a checkpoint, manned by pro-government forces, in the Maysaloun neighbourhood of the northern embattled Syrian city of Aleppo on December 8, 2016. Photo by Youssef Karwashan/AFP

UN to vote on Aleppo ceasefire resolution – diplomats

Dec 05, 2016 - 11:33 AM

Despite concessions by the resolution s drafters – an early version demanded a 10 day truce – it remains uncertain whether Moscow will use its veto in the council to torpedo the measure

CENTER OF POWER. A session of the United Nations Security Council, September 2014, United Nations, New York. Mark Garten/UN Photo

Syrian army advances in Aleppo as civilians flee

Dec 03, 2016 - 2:05 PM

UPDATED After the recent advances the regime is comfortably in control of half of former rebel territory in the city s east says Syrian Observatory for Human Rights head Rami Abdel Rahman

EXODUS. Syrian residents fleeing the eastern part of Aleppo sit on the side of the road after arriving at the Jabal Badro crossing point, which was recently retaken from rebel fighters by the regime forces, on November 30, 2016. File photo by George Ourfalian/AFP

'Catastrophic day' as Syria regime pounds rebel Aleppo

Nov 20, 2016 - 12:02 AM

Syrian government troops begin a new assault on the rebel side of Aleppo as they renew their bid to recapture the east of the city

'CATASTROPHIC.' A Syrian youth pushes his bicycle past a burning house on November 19, 2016 following a reported air strike on Aleppo's rebel-held neighborhood of Bab al-Nayrab. Photo by Ameer Alhalbi/AFP

Russian-declared ceasefire goes into effect in Aleppo

Nov 04, 2016 - 3:07 PM

UPDATED The so called humanitarian pause is the second time Russia and its regime ally have declared passages open for evacuations

US says Syrian regime using starvation as 'weapon of war'

Oct 29, 2016 - 9:17 AM

Washington is currently weighing further sanctions against Syria and a push for justice at the International Criminal Court in the Hague

ATTACKED. A damaged truck carrying aid is seen on the side of the road in the town of Orum al-Kubra on the western outskirts of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on September 20, 2016, the morning after a convoy delivering aid was hit by a deadly air strike. File photo by Omar Haj Kadour/AFP

EU drops sanctions threat against Russia over Syria

Oct 21, 2016 - 8:38 AM

UPDATED The watered down statement says the EU strongly condemns the attacks by the Syrian regime and its allies notably Russia on civilians in Aleppo and calls for an immediate cessation of hostilities

'END ATROCITIES.' European Council President Donald Tusk says EU leaders 'strongly condemned the attacks by the Syrian regime and its allies, notably Russia, on civilians in Aleppo.' File photo by Jure Makovec/AFP