Latest Damascus News

In this photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Syrian officials and journalists disembark a Syrian commercial plane after it landed at Aleppo Airport, Syria, Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020. The Syrian commercial flight on Wednesday from Damascus, marked the resumption of internal flights between Syria's two largest cities for the first time since 2012. (SANA via AP)

Symbolic Aleppo flight comes as civilians suffer in Syria

Feb. 19, 2020 1:54 PM EST

ALEPPO, Syria (AP) — A Syrian passenger jet landed in Aleppo on Wednesday from Damascus as domestic flights resumed between Syria's two largest cities for the first time since 2012, while the government continued bombarding several rebel-held towns and villages nearby. The flight carrying Syrian officials...

In this photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Syrians celebrate as they hold their national flags in Aleppo province, Syria, Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. On Monday Syria's military announced its troops have regained control of territories in northwestern Syria

After gains in northern Syria, Assad predicts total victory

Feb. 17, 2020 2:51 PM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syrian President Bashar Assad congratulated his forces Monday for recent gains in northwestern Syria that led to his troops consolidating control over Aleppo province, pledging to press ahead with a military campaign to achieve complete victory “sooner or later.” Assad,...

FILE - In this January 30, 2020 file photo, Syrians sit in the back of a truck fleeing the advance of government forces, as they head towards the Turkish border, in Idlib province, Syria. Hundreds of thousands of Syrians have fled recent government bombardment of the last rebel bastion, the northwestern Idlib province, seeking shelter from harsh winter weather in muddy tents and half-constructed buildings. As government forces advance, areas deemed safe are rapidly shrinking. (AP Photo/Ghaith al-Sayed, File)

Syrians scramble for refuge in last opposition frontier

Feb. 14, 2020 7:41 AM EST

BEIRUT (AP) — Throughout Syria’s civil war, Maad al-Khalaf helped other Syrians find shelter in the opposition enclave in the northwest as they fled government military advances around the country. Now he’s the one in need of refuge as a swift offensive overwhelmed his home village. He joined...

FILE - This Aug. 24, 2019, file photo, a Syrian soldier in the northwestern town of Khan Sheikoun, stands on the highway that links the capital Damascus with the northern city of Aleppo, Syria. The M5 highway, recaptured by President Bashar Assad’s forces this week, is arguably the most coveted prize in Syria’s civil war. The strategic highway is vital for Syria’s  economy as well as for moving troops. (AP Photo/Albert Aji, File)

AP Explains: Why Syria's M5 is Assad's highway to victory

Feb. 14, 2020 7:01 AM EST

BEIRUT (AP) — It is arguably one of the most coveted prizes in Syria’s civil war, and after eight years of fighting, Syrian President Bashar Assad has got it back. The Damascus-Aleppo highway, or the M5, is known to Syrians simply as the “International Road.” Cutting through Syria's...

Syria says defenses engaged 'hostile targets' over capital

Feb. 13, 2020 6:08 PM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syria’s air defenses engaged “hostile targets” over the capital of Damascus, state-run media said late Thursday. Residents reported loud explosions that rocked the city shortly before midnight. State news agency SANA quoted reports saying Syrian air defenses...

In this frame grab from video, Russian, Syrian and others gather next to an American military convoy stuck in the village of Khirbet Ammu, east of Qamishli city, Syria, Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2020. Syrian media and activists say a Syrian was killed and another wounded in a rare clash between American troops and a group of government supporters in northeast Syria. (AP Photo)

US troops clash with pro-government group in northeast Syria

Feb. 12, 2020 2:25 PM EST

DAMASCUS (AP) — A Syrian was killed and another was wounded when government supporters attacked American troops and tried to block their way as their convoy drove through an army checkpoint in northeastern Syria, prompting a rare clash, state media and activists reported. The U.S. military said its force...

FILE - In this April 13, 2018 file photo, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman, Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov, speaks at a briefing in Moscow. Russia’s Defense Ministry says Israeli air forces nearly shot down a passenger jetliner in Syria during a missile strike on the suburbs of Damascus.  In a statement released Friday, Feb. 7, 2020, Konashenkov said the strike was carried around 2 a.m. local time Thursday. Israel did not respond to a request for comment. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, File)

Russia says Israeli strike in Syria jeopardized civilian jet

Feb. 10, 2020 7:38 AM EST

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia’s Defense Ministry said Friday that a passenger jetliner in Syria was endangered by Israeli fighter jets that used it as shield while striking the suburbs of Damascus the previous day. The allegation comes as tensions run high in Syria, where fighting has escalated in the...

Correction: Russia-Syria story

Feb. 10, 2020 5:09 AM EST

MOSCOW (AP) — In a story published Feb. 7, 2019, about a civilian airliner endangered by military action in Damascus, Syria, The Associated Press erroneously reported that a Russian Defense Ministry spokesman claimed Israeli military aircraft nearly shot down the airliner during a missile attack on...

A man carries his belongings through a street destroyed in recent bombings by the Syrian government forces in the town of Sarmin, in Idblib province, Syria, Friday, Feb. 7, 2020. The Syrian government, backed by its ally Russia, has kept up a military offensive in Idlib province, aimed at securing a strategic highway that runs along rebel-controlled territory. President Bashar Assad's forces have seized dozens of rebel-held towns and villages in the past two months, displacing hundreds of people in the process. (AP Photo/Ghaith Alsayed)

Syrian army vows to keep up campaign against last rebel area

Feb. 9, 2020 8:39 AM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syria's military vowed on Sunday to keep up its campaign to regain control of the whole country, days after capturing large chunks of territory from the last rebel holdout in northwestern Syria. Russia has heavily backed the Syrian government's offensive. The fighting led to the...

Turkish military convoy drives through the village of Binnish, in Idlib province, Syria, Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020. Several Turkish armored vehicles and tanks entered rebel-controlled northwestern Syria since Friday, the latest reinforcements sent in by Ankara amid a Syrian government offensive that this week brought the two countries' troops into a rare direct confrontation. (AP Photo/Ghaith Alsayed)

Syrian troops gain territory in push to control key highway

Feb. 8, 2020 11:44 AM EST

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syrian government forces captured new areas from insurgents in their efforts to control a key highway in the northwest Saturday, as Turkey sent more reinforcements into the war-torn country, state media and opposition activists said. The weekslong government offensive has created a...