Latest Damascus News

This Monday, Jan. 27, 2020, photo, released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, a Syrian army soldier launches a mortar round toward insurgents on the western rural Aleppo, Syria. Syrian government forces pressed in their offensive Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2020, closing in on a major rebel stronghold in the northwestern province of Idlib and marching against insurgents west of Aleppo, Syria's largest city, state media and opposition activists said Tuesday. (SANA via AP)

Syrian troops enter key rebel-held town amid airstrikes

Jan. 28, 2020 10:36 AM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syrian government forces Tuesday entered a key rebel-held town in the country's northwest after surrounding it on three sides, sending thousands of people fleeing to safety in areas farther north, opposition activists and pro-government media said. The push into the town of Maaret...

Truckloads of civilians flee a Syrian military offensive in Idlib province on the main road near Hazano, Syria, Tuesday, Dec. 24, 2019. Syrian forces launched a wide ground offensive last week into the northwestern province of Idlib, which is dominated by al-Qaida-linked militants. The United Nations estimates that some 60,000 people have fled from the area, heading south, after the bombings intensified earlier this month. (AP Photo/Ghaith al-Sayed)

Syrian troops reach outskirts of key rebel-held town

Jan. 26, 2020 12:02 PM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syrian government forces reached the outskirts of a key rebel-held town on Sunday, part of a weekslong offensive into the country's last rebel stronghold, state media and opposition activists said. Further north, a car bomb exploded in a town held by Turkey-backed opposition fighters...

FILE - In this January 13, 2010 file photo, a Syrian employee, holds packets of Syrian currency in the Central Syrian Bank in, Damascus, Syria. With Syria's currency hitting record lows, a nationwide symbolic campaign has been launched by merchants, barbers, supermarkets and even gyms to support the Syrian pound. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla, File)

Syrians launch symbolic 'one-pound' campaign to lift morale

Jan. 24, 2020 10:14 AM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — With Syria's currency hitting record lows, a nationwide symbolic campaign has been launched by merchants, barbers, supermarkets and even gyms in the war-torn country to support the Syrian pound. Under the slogan "Our pound is our pride," the campaign encourages merchants to sell ...

This photo provided by the Syrian Civil Defense White Helmets, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows Syrian White Helmet civil defense workers extinguish a burning car that was hit by Syrian government airstrikes, in Idlib province, Syria, Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020. Syrian government warplanes struck a market and an industrial area on Wednesday in the last territory in the hands of rebel groups in the country's northwest, killing at least 15 people, opposition activists said. (Syrian Civil Defense White Helmets via AP)

Groups: Syrian planes strike market in rebel area, 15 dead

Jan. 15, 2020 2:40 PM EST

BEIRUT (AP) — Syrian government warplanes struck a market and an industrial area Wednesday in the last territory in the hands of rebel groups in the country's northwest, killing at least 15 people, opposition activists said. A new cessation of hostilities agreement between Russia and Turkey, who support...

Syria says its air defenses intercept attack on airbase

Jan. 14, 2020 4:43 PM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syria’s air defenses confronted an aerial “aggression” from Israel that targeted an air base in the country's center late Tuesday, state media reported quoting a military official. The official quoted by the state news agency SANA said the attack targeted the...

Truckloads of civilians flee a Syrian military offensive in Idlib province on the main road near Hazano, Syria, Tuesday, Dec. 24, 2019. Syrian forces launched a wide ground offensive last week into the northwestern province of Idlib, which is dominated by al-Qaida-linked militants. The United Nations estimates that some 60,000 people have fled from the area, heading south, after the bombings intensified earlier this month. (AP Photo/Ghaith al-Sayed)

Airstrikes hit rebel-held Syrian town despite new cease-fire

Jan. 10, 2020 8:49 AM EST

BEIRUT (AP) — Syrian warplanes bombed a major rebel stronghold in the country's northwest on Friday, less than 24 hours after a cease-fire went into effect there, opposition activists said. Nevertheless, activists reported an overall drop in violence in Syria's Idlib province compared to the past three...

Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, Syrian President Bashar Assad, left, and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, center, visit the Umayyad Mosque in Damascus, Syria, Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020. Putin has traveled to Syria to meet with President Bashar Assad, a key Iranian ally. The rare visit Tuesday comes amid soaring tensions between Iran and the United States following the U.S. drone strike last week that killed a top Iranian general who led forces supporting Assad in Syria's civil war. (Alexei Nikolsky/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

Unidentified planes hit Iraqi militiamen in Syria, killing 8

Jan. 10, 2020 7:56 AM EST

BEIRUT (AP) — Unidentified planes struck targets in Syria near the border with Iraq on Friday, killing eight Iran-backed Iraqi militiamen, Syrian activists and two Iraqi officials said, an attack that comes amid soaring tensions between the U.S. and Iran. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the...

This image released by the Syrian Presidency shows Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, meeting with Syrian President Bashar Assad, center, in Damascus, Syria on Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020. Putin's visit is the second to the war-torn country where his troops have been fighting alongside Syrian government forces since 2015. (Syrian Presidency via AP)

Russia's Putin visits Syria to meet Assad, a key Iran ally

Jan. 7, 2020 5:04 PM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin traveled to Damascus on Tuesday for a meeting with President Bashar Assad, a rare visit that comes amid soaring tensions between Iran and United States following the U.S. drone strike that killed a top Iranian general. While the official statements...

Syria's state news agency says Russian President Vladimir Putin is in Damascus, met President Bashar Assad

Jan. 7, 2020 9:05 AM EST
DAMASCUS (AP) — Syria's state news agency says Russian President Vladimir Putin is in Damascus, met President Bashar Assad.
FILE - In this Nov. 22, 2013 file photo, Iraqi and Lebanese Shiite fighters from a group called the Hussein Brigade, loyal to Syria's President Bashar Assad, use a helmet to draw a sniper into view during clashes against the Sunni-dominated Free Syrian Army in the town of Hejeira, Syria, outside the capital Damascus. As Iran's frontman in Syria since 2011, Qassem Soleimani, Commander of Iran's Quds Force, brought in and organized thousands of Shiite militiamen from outside Syria to back President Bashar Assad's overstretched military, providing firepower and skills. (AP Photo/Jaber al-Helo, File)

Iranian general transformed Syria's war in Assad's favor

Jan. 7, 2020 7:37 AM EST

BEIRUT (AP) — When Syrian President Bashar Assad made a rare visit to Tehran last year, the powerful Revolutionary Guard commander Qassem Soleimani was there to greet him, along with Iran's supreme leader and president. Iran's foreign minister wasn't, and he resigned in protest at being excluded from talks...