World Russia says Syrian government doubled territory it controls

19:10  13 august  2017
19:10  13 august  2017 Source:   Associated Press

Truce goes into effect in another Syria 'safe zone'

  Truce goes into effect in another Syria 'safe zone' Russia's Defense Ministry announced a cease-fire for a third safe zone in war-torn Syria.In central Syria, meanwhile, a swap between Lebanon's militant Hezbollah group and Syria's al-Qaida affiliate ended with more than 7,000 fighters and civilians crossing into rebel-held parts of northern Syria in return for the release of five Lebanese militants who arrived in government-held parts of the country.

MOSCOW -- Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu says the Syrian government has increased the size of the territory under its control by 2 1/2 times in just two months. Russia is a close ally of the Syrian regime and has been providing air support for Syrian forces since 2015.

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu says the Syrian government has increased the size of the territory under its control by 2 1/2 times in just two months. Russia is a close ally of the Syrian regime and has been providing air support for Syrian forces since 2015.

This frame grab from video provided on Sunday, Aug. 13, 2017, by the Ghouta Media Center, a Syrian activist media group, shows smoke and debris rising after a Syrian government ground-to-ground rocket strikes the opposition-held town of Ain Terma, in the Eastern Ghouta suburb of Damascus, Syria on Saturday. (Ghouta Media Center, via AP)© The Associated Press This frame grab from video provided on Sunday, Aug. 13, 2017, by the Ghouta Media Center, a Syrian activist media group, shows smoke and debris rising after a Syrian government ground-to-ground rocket strikes the opposition-held town of Ain Terma, in the Eastern Ghouta suburb of Damascus, Syria on Saturday. (Ghouta Media Center, via AP)

BEIRUT — The Syrian government has increased the size of the territory under its control by 2 ½ times in just two months, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Sunday, as Syrian forces backed by regional allies and the Russian air force seized thousands of square miles (kilometers) from the Islamic State group in the center of the country.

Hezbollah chief says ready to battle IS on Lebanon-Syria border

  Hezbollah chief says ready to battle IS on Lebanon-Syria border Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah said Friday he was ready to launch an offensive against the Islamic State group on the Lebanon-Syria border, days after forcing Al-Qaeda's former Syrian branch from the area. In a televised speech broadcast on Hezbollah's Al-Manar television channel, Nasrallah also demanded news within days about the fate of nine Lebanese soldiers kidnapped by IS in 2014.Nasrallah said "eliminating" IS from the mountainous area known as Jurud along the Lebanon-Syria border "is in the interests of both Lebanon and Syria".

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu says the Syrian government has increased the size of the territory under its control by 2 1/2 times in just two months. Russia is a close ally of the Syrian regime and has been providing air support for Syrian forces since 2015.

The Syrian government has increased the size of the territory under its control by 2 1/2 times in just two months, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said Sunday, as Syrian forces backed by regional allies and the Russian air force seized thousands of square kilometres from the Islamic State

Syrian government forces supported by Iranian-organized militias and the Russian air force have recaptured much of the country's central Homs province from the Islamic State group in 2017. Most of the province is desert. It contains several energy fields as well as phosphate minerals.

They are driving toward the city of Deir el-Zour, kept under siege by IS militants since 2015.

Shoigu, in an interview on Russian state-owned Rossiya 24 TV, said recapturing Deir el-Zour "will say a lot, if not everything, about the end of the battle with" the Islamic State group.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group reported Sunday that government forces killed at least 25 IS militants in a commando operation in the desert region. It said the soldiers rappelled down from helicopters to ambush the militants, under the cover of Russian air strikes.

Syrian army takes last IS-held town in Homs - monitor

  Syrian army takes last IS-held town in Homs - monitor Syrian government and allied forces have taken the last major town in Homs province from Islamic State, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Saturday, as the army advances towards militant strongholds in the east of the country. The town of al-Sukhna lies some 50 km (30 miles) northeast of the ancient city of Palmyra, which was captured by government forces in March. al-Sukhna is some 50 km from the administrative frontier of Deir al-Zor province, which is almost entirely under Islamic State control.A Hezbollah media unit said government and allied forces were making considerable progress inside the city of Sukhna.

MOSCOW — Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu says the Syrian government has increased the size of the territory under its control by 2 1/2 times in just two months. Shoigu made the comments in an interview with state-owned TV channel Rossiya 24 on Sunday in which he predicted the end

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu says the Syrian government has increased the size of the territory under its control by 2 1/2 times in just two months. Russia is a close ally of the Syrian regime and has been providing air support for Syrian forces since 2015.

Russia has provided air support for Syrian forces combating rebels and the Islamic State group since 2015.

Elsewhere, a rebel faction said it killed 20 army soldiers outside the Syrian capital in a tunnel blast as the battle for Damascus's northeastern suburbs showed no signs of letting up.

Wael Olwan, spokesman for the Failaq al-Rahman faction, said the operation took place before dawn Sunday.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said 16 soldiers were reported missing because of the blast.

A Russian mediated cease-fire announced last month has failed to quell the fighting between the government and rebels on the northeastern edges of Damascus. The Failaq al-Rahman opposition faction says it is not party to the agreement, and the government says it is fighting terrorists.

The government has leaned on its air force and its ground-to-ground missile systems to push rebels out and away from the capital. Several neighborhoods and towns have been destroyed. The opposition does not have an air force.

Russian jets 'destroy IS convoy in Syria' .
Russia says 200 militants were killed in the strike, which activists say took place on Friday.Russia's defence ministry said at least 200 jihadists had died after its air force targeted a convoy of about 20 4x4s, armoured vehicles and tanks.

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