Syria

135 people killed in areas covered by Syria truce in first week, monitor says

A total of 135 people were killed in the first week of a fragile truce in Syria in areas covered by the cessation of hostilities agreement, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has said. In areas held by the Islamic State and Al Nusra Front groups not covered by the ceasefire, 552 people were killed, the Britain-based Observatory said. The ...

Guns fall silent in Syria

Guns have fallen silent across Syria after a cessation of hostilities backed by the United Nations came into effect. On the stroke of midnight (2200 GMT), firing stopped in suburbs around the capital Damascus and the devastated northern city of Aleppo. Monitoring group the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said it was quiet in the north of Latakia province ...

Syria ceasefire comes into force under US-Russia deal

A landmark United Nations-backed ceasefire has come into effect in Syria – the first major truce in a five-year civil war that has claimed more than 270,000 lives. Fighting raged right up until the ceasefire took force at midnight (8:00am AEST), but guns then fell silent in the Damascus suburbs and the devastated northern city of Aleppo, AFP correspondents said. ...

Red Cross Seeks Access to More Jails in Syria

International Committee of the Red Cross chief Peter Maurer said in Damascus on Friday he had asked the Syrian authorities to allow ICRC visits to more detention centers. “For the duration of the conflict, we have been talking with the Syrian authorities to have access to detention centers, and in the past we have visited the nine main prisons,” Maurer ...

Air Strikes Batter Rebels ahead of Syria Ceasefire Deadline

Intense Russian air strikes battered rebel bastions across Syria on Friday, a monitor said, just hours before a midnight deadline for a landmark ceasefire in the country’s five-year civil war. With the ceasefire due to take effect at 2200 GMT, U.S. President Barack Obama has warned Damascus and key ally Moscow that the “world will be watching”. Both President Bashar ...

Thousands of Syrians flee to Turkish border as assault on Aleppo’s rebel-held areas intensifies

Russian and Syrian government forces have gained ground north of Aleppo, intensifying an assault on rebel-held areas that has prompted tens of thousands more Syrians to seek refuge across the border in Turkey. The assault around Aleppo, which aid workers have said could soon fall to government forces, helped to torpedo Syrian peace talks in Geneva this week. Russia’s intervention ...

What’s next for the Syrian regime?

LATAKIA, Syria — Leaving Damascus is no longer an easy journey these days; the Syrian regime has erected dozens of military checkpoints between the northern entrance of the capital and the international highway to inspect the documents and luggage of travelers. Through these inspections, the regime is trying to catch those evading compulsory military service and those opposing the regime. ...

UN envoy opens Syria peace talks in Geneva, Syrian opposition will attend but not participate

The United Nations envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has met representatives of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime for the first day of peace talks in Geneva. The main opposition umbrella group, the High Negotiations Committee (HNC), will attend the UN-brokered talks, but has refused to take part at the start of what are meant to be six months of negotiations ...

Tourists, migrants share Greek island

A relative calm prevailed over the Greek island of Kos by the time photographer Jörg Brüggemann landed there in August. The site of overloaded dinghies carrying migrants from the Aegean Sea became less common. Riots began dwindling. Only a few relics from the crisis remained: rows of deflated boats and scattered life vests strewn over the island’s white sand. It ...

Famine in Syrian city of Madaya ‘the tip of an iceberg’

Evidence of an unfolding famine in the Syrian city of Madaya continues to mount, with the international rights group Amnesty International publishing accounts of people trying to survive on boiled water and leaves. Except that now that it’s winter, the leaves are gone. Even more chilling is the idea that Madaya may not be the exception in Syria today, after ...

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