Results tagged “Syria”
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The Assad regime warned that any action in Syria without its approval would be regarded as aggression, but offered to work with any country fighting the Islamic State in Syria or Iraq. UN mediator Stefan de Mistura met with President Assad. The Al Nusrah Front released the 45 Fijian UN peacekeepers it kidnapped two weeks ago; it is unclear if any of its demands were met, but Sheik Abu Muhammad al Maqdisi was involved in the negotiations, as was Qatar. The UN said no ransom was paid for the Fijians' release. The Islamic State began evacuating positions in al Bab in Aleppo, reportedly to spare civilians from injury in the case of regime or US airstrikes. The IS has seized 13 towns in northern Aleppo since mid-August. A Jordanian sharia judge for Al Nusrah was assassinated in Idlib. Regime forces clashed with the Islamic State in Deir Izzour. The OPCW is investigating reports of toxic material being dropped from helicopters, as recently as Aug. 28 in Kafr Zeita in Hama.
The Ahrar al Sham said that Hashem al-Sheikh a.k.a. Abu Jaber will take over as leader, and Abu Saleh Tahan will become the group's military commander following the killing of 47 commanders in an explosion in Idlib. A number of the commanders were said to have died of asphyxiation while trapped in an underground bunker following the blast. The Al Nusrah Front released a eulogy for the slain Ahrar al Sham leaders. The Fijian military backtracked from its earlier assurance that Al Nusrah would soon release the 45 kidnapped Fijian peacekeepers; Al Nusrah released a video of the captives. The Kurdish YPG formed a coalition with seven other groups to fight the Islamic State in Syria. The OPCW confirmed the use of chlorine in eight attacks on three villages in northern Syria in April. A reconnaissance aircraft was spotted over Raqqah city.
A suicide bombing in Idlib killed Hassan Abboud, who is the head of Ahar al Sham and the Islamic Front's political leader, along with more than a dozen other leaders among some 50 said to be attending a meeting. Influential al Qaeda leaders mourned the deaths; one said Abboud had been in direct contact with al Qaeda emir Ayman al Zawahiri. A military emir for the Al Nusrah Front was killed by regime forces during a clash in Hama. Al Nusrah and the Islamic Front continued to fight regime forces in Quneitra, and took over the al Mal hill as well as the town of Kafar Nasig on the border with Deraa. The head of the Fijian military claimed that the Al Nusrah Front told the UN that the 45 kidnapped Fijian peacekeepers will be released in a few days. The Islamic State battled regime forces near the airbase in Deir Izzour.