Syria - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Syria


Syria condemned at toxic arms watchdog over sarin attacks

Jul 09, 2020 - 9:40 PM

Only Russia, China, and Iran vote against the decision at the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons' executive council accusing Syria of breaching the Chemical Weapons Convention

OPCW. This picture taken on April 20, 2017 shows the logo of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons at the headquarters in The Hague. File photo by John Thys/AFP

Iran, Russia, Turkey agree to work together to ease Syria tensions

Jul 01, 2020 - 10:55 PM

The conference comes at a time when Russia-Turkey relations are tense not just over Syria but also Libya, another theater of war where Moscow and Ankara support opposing fighters

COOPERATION. A handout picture provided by the Iranian presidency on July 1, 2020, shows President Hassan Rouhani (R), accompanied by the Foreign Minister Mohmmad Javad Zarif (2-R) who is mask-clad due to the coronavirus pandemic and other officials, attending by video conference a trilateral meeting with the leaders of Turkey and Russia on the topic of Syria, in the Iranian capital Tehran. AFP PHOTO/HO/IRANIAN PRESIDENCY

Syria devalues currency as new U.S. sanctions hit

Jun 17, 2020 - 11:00 PM

The Syrian central bank raises the official exchange rate from around 700 to 1,250 Syrian pounds to the dollar

Image from Shutterstock

Vowing new Syria campaign, U.S. sanctions dozens including Assad wife

Jun 17, 2020 - 9:23 PM

'We anticipate many more sanctions and we will not stop until Assad and his regime stop their needless, brutal war against the Syrian people,' US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says

SANCTIONS. A handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) shows Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (R) speaking next to his wife Asma as they receive members of the army and their mother's to celebrate Mother's Day in the capital Damascus on March 21, 2016. AFP PHOTO/HO/SANA

Syria central bank warns against currency 'manipulation'

May 20, 2020 - 10:30 AM

The warning comes as the Syrian pound hits record lows against the dollar

Image from Shutterstock

Russia, China boycott U.N. Security Council meeting on Syria

May 13, 2020 - 8:15 AM

'Regrettably, our Western partners, and their allies, insisted on holding this meeting behind closed doors in an informal setting despite the slogans of openness and transparency of the Security Council,' says Russia's UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia

Syrian fighters upping attacks on civilians during pandemic – UN

May 09, 2020 - 12:36 PM

There have been reports of targeted killings and bombings in Syria, many of which take place in populated areas

A Syrian Red Crescent member sprays disinfectant along an alley of the historic Hamidiyah souk (market) in the old city of Syria's capital Damascus on March 22, 2020, as part of efforts against the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. (Photo by LOUAI BESHARA / AFP)

Syria postpones election for second time over virus

May 07, 2020 - 7:38 PM

The vote will be pushed back to July 19 from the scheduled date of May 20 as 'part of preventive measures' to combat the virus

COVID-19 IN SYRIA. A handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) on MAY 4, 2020 shows Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (C) meeting with members of the government team tasked with handling the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic in the capital Damascus. AFP PHOTO/HO/SANA

'Keep going': Syrian refugees use war resilience to confront virus

May 03, 2020 - 1:11 PM

Four Syrians in France say their past ordeals – like prison and exile – had primed them for coping with the lockdown

SURVIVOR. Syrian refugee Dunia speaks with her daughter on April 26, 2020 in Clamart near Paris, as the country is under lockdown to stop the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic Photo by Alain Jocard/AFP

Virus 'disaster in the making' in war-torn Syria

Apr 13, 2020 - 12:30 PM

Official numbers are low with two deaths and 19 confirmed cases, but only 100 patients are being tested daily, with half of the testing carried out in the capital Damascus

MAKING MASKS. A Kurdish woman makes protective face masks at a small workshop in the northern Syrian Kurdish town of Derik (al-Malikiya in Arabic) to help fight the spread of the novel coronavirus, on April 9, 2020. Photo by Delil Souleiman/AFP

Watchdog blames Syria for chemical weapons attacks

Apr 08, 2020 - 11:13 PM

(UPDATED) The findings come in the first report from a new investigative team set up by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to identify the perpetrators of attacks in Syria's ongoing nine-year-long civil war

2017 ATTACK. Syrian gather on July 12, 2017 at a destroyed building in Khan Sheikhun, a rebel-held town in the northwestern Syrian Idlib province, 100 days following a suspected toxic gas attack that was reported to have killed 88 people, including 31 children. File photo by Omar haj kadour/AFP

Syria war records lowest monthly death toll in 9 years

Apr 01, 2020 - 10:56 PM

Of the total deaths, some 51 people were killed in shelling and air strikes by the Syrian regime, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says

SYRIA WAR. Displaced Syrian children walk at a school that was reportedly targeted in a regime forces' air strike in Syria's northwestern Idlib province on March 3, 2020 near the town of Adwan. File photo by Ibrahim Yasouf/AFP

Syria announces first case of novel coronavirus

Mar 23, 2020 - 4:54 PM

Health minister Nizar Yaziji says authorities had recorded 'a first case of the coronavirus in Syria in a person coming from abroad,' without specifying the country

SYRIA'S FIRST CASE. A Syrian Red Crescent member sprays disinfectant along an alley of the historic Hamidiyah souk (market) in the old city of Syria's capital Damascus on March 22, 2020. Photo by Louai Beshara/AFP

U.N. says nearly 5 million children born into Syria war

Mar 15, 2020 - 10:20 PM

UNICEF also says close to 5,000 children were recruited into the fighting

Syrian children play as they sit on the tip of an abandoned missile at the Ash'ari camp for the displaced in the rebel-held eastern Ghouta area outside the capital Damascus on October 25, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Amer ALMOHIBANY

Iranian commander killed near Damascus – monitor

Mar 07, 2020 - 10:54 PM

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights calls the death of Farhad Dabirian, a commander in Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, an 'assassination'

Rare calm in Syria's Idlib after ceasefire deal

Mar 06, 2020 - 5:12 PM

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group and AFP correspondents in Idlib province say the truce that came into force at midnight appears to be holding

SUFFER THE CHILD. A wounded Syrian child sits at a makeshift clinic in the town of Maaret Misrin following Syrian government forces airstrikes on March 5, 2020 in the country's northwestern Idlib province. Photo by Aref Tammawi/AFP

Putin, Erdogan agree to ceasefire in Syria's Idlib

Mar 05, 2020 - 11:43 AM

(4th UPDATE) 'The object is to avoid the humanitarian crisis getting worse,' Erdogan says, though he adds that Turkey reserves the right to 'retaliate with all its strength against any attack' by Damascus

SHAKE ON IT. Russian President Vladimir Putin(R) and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan shake hands during a joint press conference following their talks in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on October 22, 2019. Photo by Sergei Chirikov/AFP

U.N. probe highlights Russia, Turkey roles in Syria 'war crimes'

Mar 03, 2020 - 11:44 AM

'You have children in open air with their families, without a tent, without shelter, without blankets, UN's Syria commission chair says, lamenting that 'children are freezing to death'

CHILD. 11-year-old Syrian girl Rawan poses on a destroyed tank with her stuffed bear near the village of Yazi Bagh. Photo by Nazeer Al-Khatib/AFP

Erdogan threatens Europe with 'millions' of migrants

Mar 02, 2020 - 8:47 PM

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hopes to reach a deal on a ceasefire in Syria when he meets his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin following intense fighting in the last rebel holdout of Idlib

RECEP TAYYIP ERDOGAN. President of Turkey and leader of Justice and Development (AK) Party, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, speaks during his party's group meeting at Grand National Assembly of Turkey in Ankara, on February 26, 2020. Photo by Adem Altan/AFP

Turkish drones kill 19 Syrian government soldiers as tensions soar

Mar 02, 2020 - 9:13 AM

The report comes hours after Turkey shot down two Syrian warplanes

SIEGE. Turkey-backed Syrian fighters ride a tank in the town of Saraqib in the eastern part of the Idlib province in northwestern Syria, on February 27, 2020. Photo by Bakr Alakasem/AFP

Turkey says pursuing military operation against Syrian regime

Mar 01, 2020 - 8:29 PM

Though Turkey has reported striking targets in Syria since dozens of its troops were killed there, it is the first confirmation of a full and continuing operation

SIEGE. Turkey-backed Syrian fighters ride a tank in the town of Saraqib in the eastern part of the Idlib province in northwestern Syria, on February 27, 2020. Photo by Bakr Alakasem/AFP

Turkey-Russia tensions soar after deadly Syria strike

Feb 28, 2020 - 8:59 PM

Both Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan appear keen to scale down the tensions, expressing 'serious concern' about the situation in their telephone talks

33 Turkish soldiers killed in Syria's Idlib

Feb 28, 2020 - 2:01 PM

Dozens more soldiers are injured and taken to Turkey for treatment, Rahmi Dogan, governor of Turkish Hatay – bordering Syria – said Friday, February 28.

Turkey-backed Syrian fighters ride a tank in the town of Saraqib in the eastern part of the Idlib province in northwestern Syria, on February 27, 2020. Syrian rebels reentered the key northwestern crossroads town of Saraqib lost to government forces earlier this month but fierce fighting raged on in its outskirts today, an AFP correspondent reported. Bakr ALKASEM / AFP

Israeli warplanes hit Gaza, Syria after Palestinian rocket barrage

Feb 24, 2020 - 9:12 AM

The Israeli military says it had struck 'dozens' of Islamic Jihad targets throughout Gaza

EXPLOSION. A ball of fire is seen following an Israel airstrike at Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip early on February 23, 2020. Photo by Said Khatib/AFP

Turkish soldier killed by regime fire in Syria's Idlib

Feb 22, 2020 - 11:34 PM

Turkey has 12 observation posts in Idlib as part of a Turkey-Russia deal, but Ankara's forces have come under attack this month from Syrian regime force

CONVOY. Residents watch as a Turkish military convoy that crossed from the border with Syria, passes through the Syrian rebel-held town of Hazano in Idlib's northern countryside, on February 22, 2020. Photo by Aaref Watad/AFP

Russia warns Turkey, blocks U.N. bid to end Syria bloodshed

Feb 20, 2020 - 9:36 AM

Syrian aid workers call urgently for a ceasefire and international help for nearly a million people fleeing the regime onslaught

TUNNEL. Turkish-backed Syrian fighters inspect a tunnel, said to have been built by Kurdish fighters, in the Syrian border town of Tal Abyad, on October 21, 2019. Photo by Bakr Alkasem/AFP

First civilian flight since 2012 lands in Aleppo

Feb 19, 2020 - 8:27 PM

The flight comes days after the government announced it had wrested the entire region around the second city of Aleppo back from jihadists and their rebel allies

FIRST CIVILIAN FLIGHT. The cockpit of the plane that carried out a flight from the Syrian capital Damascus to Aleppo is pictured upon the plane's arrival at the airport of the northern city that reopened today for the first time since the war forced its closure in 2012. Photo by Louai Beshara/AFP

Russia warns against Turkey operation in Syria

Feb 19, 2020 - 6:42 PM

(UPDATED) President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has threatened to launch an operation in Idlib by the end of the month if Damascus fails to withdraw its troops behind Turkish military positions

WARNING. Turkish military M60T tanks drive through the village of Matarim in the south of Syria's northwestern province of Idlib, near the M4 motorway that connects Aleppo with Latakia, on February 17, 2020. File photo by Omar Haj Kadour/AFP

Trump calls for Russia to stop backing Syrian 'atrocities'

Feb 17, 2020 - 9:04 AM

A Russian-backed offensive has triggered the largest wave of displacement in Syria's civil war, with 800,000 people fleeing since December, the United Nations says

BLACK CLOUD. Smoke billows following reported bombardment by Syrian regime forces on the town of Kafr Ruma in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib, on January 27, 2020. Photo by Omar Haj KadourAFP

Syria parliament recognizes Armenian genocide

Feb 14, 2020 - 10:03 AM

The Armenians seek international recognition that the mass killings of their people under the Ottoman Empire from 1915 to 1917 amounted to genocide. They say 1.5 million died.

MEMORIAL. In this file photo taken on May 7, 2018, a man visits the Tsitsernakaberd Armenian Genocide Memorial in Yerevan. Photo by Sergei Gapon/AFP

Syrian air defense intercepts missile attack – state media

Feb 14, 2020 - 7:46 AM

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights blames the attack on Israel, which has not claimed responsibility

CONFLICT. This image grab taken from a video released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) on February 6, 2020, shows an explosion following an Israeli air strike on an undisclosed location in Syria. Photo by SANA/AFP

Turkey, Russia trade accusations as Syria tensions rise

Feb 12, 2020 - 6:13 PM

(UPDATED) Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatens to strike Syrian regime forces 'everywhere' if his soldiers come under renewed attack

TENSION. Syrian government forces deploy near the Damascus-Aleppo highway in the southern part of Syria's northern Aleppo province on February 10, 2020. AFP file photo

Syria regime helicopter downed as Ankara threatens Damascus

Feb 12, 2020 - 10:26 AM

The advance marks another step in President Bashar al-Assad's campaign to retake Syria's last rebel-held pocket

REMAINS. Syrian rebel fighters gather around the burning remains of a military helicopter after it was shot down over the village of Qaminas, about 6 kilometres southeast of Idlib city in northwestern Syria on February 11, 2020. Photo by Omar Haj Kadour/AFP

Idlib displacement worst since start of Syria war – U.N.

Feb 11, 2020 - 9:23 PM

'In just 10 weeks, since 1 December, some 690,000 people have been displaced from their homes in Idlib and surrounding areas,' says the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

INTERNALLY DISPLACED. A truck loaded with a family's belongings drives on the outskirts of the town of Deir Ballut as Syrians fleeing air strikes by pro-regime forces on rebel-held areas of the Idlib province head toward safer zones near the Turkish border, on February 6, 2020. File photo by Rami al Sayed/AFP

Syrian regime shelling kills 5 Turkish soldiers in Idlib

Feb 10, 2020 - 11:11 PM

The barrage also wounds 5 soldiers in the violence-plagued northwest, prompting the Turkish military to respond by 'destroying targets'

SYRIA'S IDLIB. A Turkish military convoy passes through the town of Binnish in Syria's northwestern province of Idlib, near the Syria-Turkey border on February 10, 2020. Photo by Muhammad Haj Kadour/AFP

Israeli strikes kill 23 Syrian, foreign fighters in Syria

Feb 06, 2020 - 11:58 PM

The reported Israeli strikes come as government forces press a blistering offensive against Syria's last major rebel bastion, in the Idlib region in the northwest

ISRAELI STRIKES. This image grab taken from a video released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency on February 6, 2020, shows an explosion following an Israeli air strike on an undisclosed location in Syria. AFP PHOTO/HO/SANA

Northwest Syria violence displaces 500,000 in 2 months

Feb 05, 2020 - 9:32 AM

According to the UN, the vast majority – 80% – are women and children

ESCAPE. Syrian refugees carry their belongings as they wait to enter Jordanian side of the Hadalat border crossing, a military zone east of the capital Amman, after arriving from Syria on May 4, 2016. Photo by Kahlil Mazraawi/AFP

Rocket fire targets Syria oil facilities – state media

Feb 04, 2020 - 6:00 PM

Oil Minister Ali Ghanem says the targeted facilities were the Ebla and south central region gas plants, as well as the Al-Rayyan gas station and a refinery in the central province of Homs

Erdogan urges Russia to 'assume its obligations' in Syria's Idlib

Feb 04, 2020 - 10:09 AM

Turkey, which already hosts more than 3.7 million Syrians, fears a further influx of refugees fleeing violence in Idlib

SITE. A Syrian man clears debris at the site of helicopter gunfire which reportedly killed nine people near the northwestern Syrian village of Barisha in the Idlib province along the border with Turkey on October 27, 2019, where "groups linked to the Islamic State group" were present, according to a Britain-based war monitor with sources inside Syria. Photo by Omar Haj Kadour/AFP

HIGHLIGHTS: Philippines vs Morocco - Dubai International Championship Semifinals

Jan 31, 2020 - 5:00 PM

Mighty Sports Philippines vies for a championship berth versus Morocco's AS Sale in Dubai at 11 pm on Friday, January 31

Flawless Mighty Sports crushes Syria's Al Wathba to reach Dubai semis

Jan 31, 2020 - 3:22 AM

Mighty Sports gets a balanced scoring production from its veterans and young guns to remain unbeaten in the Dubai International Basketball Championship

ON A ROLL. Andray Blatche and Mighty Sports cruise into their fifth straight win. Photo release

HIGHLIGHTS: Philippines vs Syria - Dubai International Championship Quarterfinals

Jan 30, 2020 - 6:00 PM

Mighty Sports Philippines targets a Final Four spot versus Syria's Al Wathba Sport Club at 1 am on Friday, January 31

Syria regime forces recapture most of key rebel-held town

Jan 29, 2020 - 10:13 AM

Maaret al-Numan is a semi-deserted town of symbolic and strategic importance in Syria's last major rebel-held bastion

BLACK CLOUD. Smoke billows following reported bombardment by Syrian regime forces on the town of Kafr Ruma on the outskirts of Maaret al-Numan, in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib, on January 27, 2020.Photo by Omar Haj KadourAFP

Fil-Am Williams erupts in 2nd half as Mighty sweeps Dubai elims

Jan 29, 2020 - 3:23 AM

Mighty Sports clinches its 4th straight win to top Group A heading into the knockout quarterfinals

RED-HOT. Mikey Williams puts on a shooting clinic for Mighty Sports. File photo from Instagram/

Trump ignores critics, to unveil Israel-Palestinian peace plan

Jan 28, 2020 - 9:48 AM

Netanyahu, praising Trump as 'the greatest friend that Israel's had in the White House,' describes the peace plan as 'the deal of the century'

SLAMMING TRUMP. Palestinian demonstrators chant slogans against US President Donald Trump during a protest against his expected announcement of a peace plan, in Rafah in the southern Gaza strip on January 28, 2020. Photo by said Khatib AFP

Mighty catches fire in 1st half, survives Syria for 2nd Dubai win

Jan 25, 2020 - 2:18 AM

Propped up by Andray Blatche and Renaldo Balkman, Mighty Sports Philippines outlasts Syria for a 2-0 start in Dubai

HIGHLIGHTS: Philippines vs Syria - Dubai International Basketball Championship

Jan 24, 2020 - 4:59 PM

After an opening-day escape, Mighty Sports Philippines shoots for a more convincing win versus Syria's Al Ittihad Aleppo on Friday, January 24

Syria says Israel behind aerial attack against military airport

Jan 15, 2020 - 7:21 AM

The attack adds to the growing tension in the Middle East after a US drone killed Iranian general Qasem Soleimani

Israeli soldiers and armoured vehicles are pictured on November 19, 2019 near the border with Syria in the annexed Golan Heights. - Israel's anti-missile defence system intercepted four rockets fired from neighbouring Syria on Tuesday, the army said. "Four launches were identified from Syria towards Israeli territory which were intercepted by the Israeli air defense systems," the Israeli army said in a statement. (Photo by JALAA MAREY / AFP)

King of Jordan warns Islamic State on rise again

Jan 13, 2020 - 3:23 PM

Jordan, whose stability is seen as vital for the volatile Middle East, hosts some 1.3 million refugees from neighboring war-torn Syria

KING. A handout picture released by the Jordanian Royal Palace on October 21, 2018 shows Jordanian King Abdullah II speaking during a meeting with local political figures in the capital Amman. (Yousef Allan/Jordanian Royal Palace/AFP)

ISIS claims deadly attack on police in Russian Caucasus

Jan 02, 2020 - 8:14 PM

The Amaq statement on Telegram says the men are 'two fighters from Islamic state' who killed two officers and injured others