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Showing posts with label Syria. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Syria. Show all posts

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Clashes between  regime and jihadist-led forces in northwest Syria kill more than 80 fighters in Syria

Clashes between regime and jihadist-led forces in northwest Syria kill more than 80 fighters in Syria

Clashes between  regime and jihadist-led forces in northwest Syria kill more than 80 fighters in Syria

BEIRUT: More than 80 fighters were killed in clashes on Thursday between regime and jihadist-led forces in northwest Syria, as violence raged on the edge of an opposition bastion despite a September truce deal.

In nearby Afrin, a car bombing killed 13 people in the latest violence to hit the city that Turkey-backed rebels seized last year f rom Kurdish fighters.

Syria`s civil war has killed a total of more than 370,000 people and spiralled into a complex conflict since starting in 2011 with the repression of antigovernment protests.

Clashes raged on Thursday in northern Hama after a small advance by jihadist-led forces overnight, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Fighting and bombardment since the launch of the attack late Wednesday killed at least 46 regime forces and 36 jihadists and allied rebels, the Britainbased war monitor said.

`The fighting is ongoing as regime planes and artillery pound the area, Observatory head RamiAbdel Rahman said.

Elsewhere in Syria, eight civilians were among the 13 people killed in a car bomb near a checkpoint outside Afrin, the Observatory said.

Turkish troops and Syrian proxies took control of Afrin from Kurdish forces they consider `terrorists` in March last year after a two-month air and ground of fensive.

Those killed also included four fighters.

`Among the victims, at least six are originallyfrom Eastern Ghouta,` a former rebel bastion near Damascus retaken by the regime last year, Abdel Rahman said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blast, but a commander with a pro-Ankara faction accused Kurdish fighters.

Car bomb hits near church QAMISHLI: A car bomb detonated near a churchin the Kurdish-majority city of Qamishli in northeast Syria on Thursday wound-ing several people, an AFP journalist and state media said.

The metal gate of the church was slightly dented by the blast, but the building otherwise emerged intact, the correspondent said.

There was no immediate claim for the attack, which Syrian state television said wounded 11 people and damaged nearby cars.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based monitor, said only seven people were wounded, and that three among them were in critical condition.

Last month, a car bombing near Kurdish security offices in the same city wounded seven civilians, including a child, the Observatory said.

Syria`s Kurds have led the US-backed fight in the war-torn country against the Islamic State group, which continues to claim attacks despite its territorial defeat earlier this year.

These have included arson attacks on wheat fields and deadly car bombs.-AFP

Thursday, March 15, 2018

یا اللہ مدد فرما :  3لاکھ 50 ہزار سے زیادہ لوگ ہلاک ہوچکے ہیں، 19 ہزار سے زائد بچے شامل ہیں، درندگی انتہا کو پہنچ چکی ہے

یا اللہ مدد فرما : 3لاکھ 50 ہزار سے زیادہ لوگ ہلاک ہوچکے ہیں، 19 ہزار سے زائد بچے شامل ہیں، درندگی انتہا کو پہنچ چکی ہے

More than 350,000 dead in Syria’s war

یا اللہ مدد فرما :  3لاکھ 50 ہزار سے زیادہ لوگ ہلاک ہوچکے ہیں، 19 ہزار سے زائد بچے شامل ہیں، درندگی انتہا کو پہنچ چکی ہے

BEIRUT: Syria´s conflict has killed more than 350,000 people, uprooted more than half the population and left much of the country in ruins since it erupted seven years ago. Here are some key statistics; The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says it has recorded the deaths of 353,935 people since the conflict began with anti-government protests in March 2011.

Those killed included 106,390 civilians, of whom 19,811 were children and 12,513 were women, according to a toll it released on March 12, 2018. In a country with a pre-war population of 23 million, the United Nations estimates that 6.1 million people have been internally displaced by the fighting. French group Handicap International said on March 12, 2018 that three million people have been wounded in the conflict. This includes 1.5 million who are now permanently handicapped, 86,000 of whom required amputation, it says.

The war has forced 5.4 million people to flee Syria, according to the UNHCR. Neighbouring Turkey, the main host country, has taken in more than 3.3 million Syrian refugees. It is followed by Lebanon, which the UN says hosts around one million Syrians -- one in four of the Lebanese population. The Lebanese government says as many as 1.5 million Syrians are in the country.

In Jordan, where the UNHCR says it has registered 657,000 Syrians, the government says it is hosting 1.3 million. At least another 246,000 Syrians have taken refuge in Iraq and 126,000 in Egypt, the refugee agency says.

In 2017 Amnesty International said Syrian authorities hanged around 13,000 people between 2011 and 2015 at the infamous Saydnaya prison near Damascus. It said a further 17,700 people had died in custody since the conflict began.

The Observatory says at least 60,000 people have died from torture or harsh conditions in regime prisons since 2011. The monitor says half a million people have spent time in regime jails since the start of the conflict. Several thousand have died over the same period in prisons run by militants or other rebels, it says. Analysts say the conflict has set Syria´s economy back by three decades and devastated its infrastructure.

The education and health systems are in ruins. With oil production at its lowest in years, a total halt in phosphate exports and power generation sharply reduced, Syria´s economy is on its knees, according to government ministers.

In a July 2017 report on the economic and social consequences of the conflict, the World Bank estimated the cumulative losses in gross domestic product at $226 billion, about four times the Syrian GDP in 2010. The World Bank said of the cities taken into account in the report, 27 percent of the housing stock had been damaged, with seven percent of that destroyed and around half the medical and education facilities.

"Some 13.1 million people in Syria require humanitarian assistance... with 69 percent of the population estimated to be living in extreme poverty," the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Aid (OCHA) said in 2017. It reported 2.98 million people in hard-to-reach areas, including 419,000 in UN-declared besieged areas. AFP

Monday, February 26, 2018

Syria is burning -  'Survive or die together': More than 400 killed in Eastern Ghouta

Syria is burning - 'Survive or die together': More than 400 killed in Eastern Ghouta

Syria is burning -  'Survive or die together': More than 400 killed in Eastern Ghouta

Syrian government aerial offensive on rebel-held enclave that began on Sunday has killed at least 403 people.

More than 400 people have been killed in Eastern Ghouta, a monitoring group said, as Syrian government forces backed by Russian warplanes continued their aerial bombardment of the rebel-held area.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Thursday that at least 403 people were killed in the "hysterical attack" that began on Sunday, including 150 children. Almost 2,120 others were wounded.

UN special envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, stressed the urgent need for a ceasefire in comments made before Thursday's UN Security Council meeting.

"The humanitarian situation in Eastern Ghouta is appalling and, therefore, we need a ceasefire that stops both the horrific heavy bombardment of Eastern Ghouta and the indiscriminate mortar shelling on Damascus," he said.

He added the ceasefire needs to be followed by immediate, unhindered humanitarian access and a facilitated evacuation of wounded people out of Eastern Ghouta and warned against this being a repeat of Aleppo.

Living under bombardment
Residents of Eastern Ghouta, the majority of whom are internally displaced, say there is nothing they can do and nowhere to hide.

Rafat al-Abram lives in Douma and is a car mechanic. The air attacks over the last few days have disrupted his job as the street he works on was destroyed by two raids.

"I managed to get some of my tools and equipment out, and fix cars whenever I can," he told Al Jazeera.

"Sometimes I also fix the ambulances of the civil defence, which break down often because of their constant use."

The air offensive by Syrian and Russian warplanes since Sunday has been relentless, residents of Eastern Ghouta say [Courtesy: SAMS] 
His wife and two teenage daughters, Khadija, 17, and Ola, 15, remain at home. They start their day by sitting together before al-Abram visits his neighbours to get the latest grim news.

"Sometimes a bombing takes place near where I am working, which means I have to stop and hurry to help the civil defence pull victims from the rubble," he said.

After al-Abram returns home, he says he is haunted by the unbearable scenes he witnessed during the day.

"Seeing a father or mother wailing and crying over their dead children, or a father carrying his son who has one leg amputated, or another screaming at God and then at people to help save his family who are all lying under the rubble of a building … I try to comfort them even though I want to sit and cry with them from the horror of what is happening all around us," he said.

'Survive or die together'
Rebel-controlled Eastern Ghouta, a mostly rural area on the outskirts of the capital Damascus, has been under government siege since 2013. About 400,000 Syrians live there. The siege has resulted in huge inflation of the cost of basic foodstuffs, a bag of bread now costs the equivalent of $5.

Malnutrition rates have reached unprecedented levels, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, with 11.9 percent of children under the age of five acutely malnourished.

Only one aid convoy was permitted inside the area in February, to the town of Nashabieh, but none were allowed in January and December.

Nisma al-Hatri told Al Jazeera her husband and 10-year-old daughter Sara wake up to the sound of warplanes.

"Every day goes like this: bombings, then I clean the house from the effect of the nearby shelling, then we hide in one room, attempting to survive or die together," Hatri said.

"My daughter Sara and I wake up with our arms around each other from the night before," al-Hatmi continued. "We all sleep on one mattress. She hugs me and asks me why she can't go out to play, or to school or to see her friends. I cannot answer her."

The 32-year-old used to be a teacher, but schools were shut down a month ago because the situation grew too dangerous to go outside. Nevertheless, Hatmi still gives lessons to Sara and other neighbourhood children on an almost daily basis.

Her husband goes out every morning for several hours and returns with barley, which Hatmi cooks with rice for their breakfast and dinner. Some days her husband returns empty-handed.

'War against civilians'
Mahmood Adam, a member of the Syrian Civil Defence, described to Al Jazeera the reality of Eastern Ghouta as "disastrous".

Civil defence help a man from a shelter in the besieged town of Douma in Eastern Ghouta [Bassam Khabieh/Reuters] 
"We are talking about a systematic targeting of civilians in their homes, schools, medical centres, marketplaces, and civil defence sites," he said. "This is an extermination of the society in this area."

"There are families who have been hiding in basements and underground shelters who haven't seen the sun in days for fear of the brutality of the regime and the Russian warplanes," he continued.

"We don't know whether we will be alive to tell the world what is happening in the next hour or day. The rocket launchers are relentless, and the warplanes have not left the skies of Eastern Ghouta since Sunday.

"Everyone here knows this is a slaughter and a crime against humanity," he added. "This is a war against civilians."

Targeting medical centres
Speaking from the Turkish border city of Gaziantep, Al Jazeera's Osama Bin Javaid said doctors in Eastern Ghouta are saying the circumstances are "beyond words".

"What they see is body after body arriving in makeshift clinics," Bin Javaid said. "[They are] trying to give medical aid to the people who are in their hundreds being wounded in a relentless barrage of rockets, shells, and air raids.

"They are running out of medical assistance and places to put these people because at least 22 facilities, according to the Syrian American Medical Society, have been targeted since Sunday," he said.

A man walks out of a building's rubble carrying two crutches in Eastern Ghouta [Courtesy of SAMS] 
Ahmed al-Masri, spokesman for the Union of Free Syrian Doctors, told Al Jazeera that government forces are attempting to destroy "every aspect of civilian life".

"The regime's forces are using the most ferocious means of bombardment," he said. "As a result, many of the hospitals and medical facilities in Eastern Ghouta were directly hit and destroyed.

"Three of our medical centres were shelled and destroyed, and one of our crews was killed and three others wounded."

No consensus on ceasefire
Meanwhile, the UN Security Council failed to reach an agreement on a resolution put forward by Sweden and Kuwait that called for a 30-day cessation of hostilities to allow aid delivery and the evacuation of civilians from besieged Eastern Ghouta.

Russian UN ambassador Vassily Nebenzya said there was "no agreement" and presented amendments to the draft resolution "for it to be realistic". He also accused the Syrian Civil Defence, also known as the White Helmets, of being "closely affiliated with terrorist groups".

The Syrian ambassador to the UN, Basher al-Jaafari, accused the UN and mainstream media of backing "terrorists recruited by the US from all over the world" to fight in Syria.

Al Jazeera's diplomatic correspondent James Bays said Jaafari's comments were typical of a man who has "stoutly defended his government and whatever it does".

"He is representing a government that is breaching international law - effectively many would say carrying out war crimes," Bays said, speaking from the UN headquarters in New York.

"He's very much supported diplomatically by Russia. They helped the Syrian government turn the tide of the war in the last two years, and they are now helping do whatever it takes to win the war."

Friday, January 26, 2018

Syria - 1st week of Turkish attack on Afrin killed 102 - FoxNews

Syria - 1st week of Turkish attack on Afrin killed 102 - FoxNews

Syria - 1st week of Turkish attack on Afrin killed 102 - FoxNews

BEIRUT, Lebanon –  The Latest on Syria developments (all times local):

12:55 p.m.

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces says the first week of Turkey's incursion into the Syrian Kurdish enclave of Afrin has left more than a 100 civilians and fighters dead.

The SDF said in a statement Friday that the dead are 59 civilians and 43 fighters, including eight women fighters. It said 134 civilians were wounded in the weeklong clashes.

Turkey's military offensive against the Kurdish-controlled enclave of Afrin in northwestern Syria, which began Saturday, had raised the possibility of the creation of a 30-kilometer-deep (20-mile) "safe zone" in Syria running along Turkey's border


12:10 p.m.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is vowing to expand Ankara's operation in a Kurdish enclave in northern Syria eastward, toward the frontier with Iraq.

The announcement came as Erdogan spoke on Friday to his ruling-party officials in the capital, Ankara.

Erdogan says the push into Afrin would stretch to the Syrian Kurdish town of Manbij and toward the border with Iraq, "until no terrorist is left."

Manbij is held by the U.S.-backed Syrian Kurdish militia, which Turkey considers a terrorist group and an extension of its own insurgent group.

Pushing into Manbj would put Turkish troops in proximity to American soldiers there.

Erdogan again slammed the United States, a NATO ally, for backing the Kurdish group, saying: "how can a strategic partner do such a thing to its strategic partner?"

Read more on source

Monday, May 22, 2017

More than 50 casualties reported for Ahrar Al-Sham as ISIS suicide bombers strike behind enemy lines

More than 50 casualties reported for Ahrar Al-Sham as ISIS suicide bombers strike behind enemy lines

More than 50 casualties reported for Ahrar Al-Sham as ISIS suicide bombers strike behind enemy lines

DAMASCUS, SYRIA : In a newly released statement, ISIS took full responsibility for a twin suicide bombing which rocked an Islamist military base at Tall Al-Toukan in the eastern countryside of Idlib.

According to Amaq Agency, two ISIS suicide bombers entered a Ahrar Al-Sham training camp with explosive belts and motorcycle bombs, thus causing massive devastation in the wake of the attack.

The ISIS-tied outlet said 50 Ahrar Al-Sham fighters were killed or injured. According to initial reports, some 500 recruits were undergoing training at the base.

Hundreds of ISIS sleeper cells are reportedly active in Idlib province, constantly harassing rival jihadist factions. Web Desk

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

110 civilians killed in 2 weeks of Turkish airstrikes on Syria’s al-Bab: SOHR

110 civilians killed in 2 weeks of Turkish airstrikes on Syria’s al-Bab: SOHR

A UK-based monitoring group says at least 110 civilians have been killed by Turkish airstrikes in the Daesh-held Syrian city of al-bab over the past two weeks.

The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights noted that on Monday alone eleven members of one family were killed as their home was destroyed by Turkish airstrikes and shelling aimed at paving the way for advancing Turkey-backed militants.   

"There is fierce bombardment from Turkish forces on Daesh positions in al-Bab," added the group.

It added that a large number of civilians are forced to flee their homes every day as Turkish-backed militants make advances in the city.

"I saw destruction -- the artillery and the airplanes shelling. There's destruction everywhere," said one fleeing civilian. "We got out safe and sound, thank God, and the town is now encircled," he added.

Al-Bab is Daesh’s final bastion in the northern Syrian province of Aleppo -- second only in significance to the terrorists group's de facto capital in adjacent Raqqah.

In August 2016, Turkey began a major military intervention in Syria, dubbed "Euphrates Shield," sending tanks and warplanes across the border.

Ankara claimed that its military campaign was aimed at pushing Daesh from Turkey's border with Syria and stopping the advance of Kurdish forces, but Damascus denounced the operation as a breach of its sovereignty.

"Euphrates Shield fighters gathered last night and divided up the town into three axes to facilitate the storming of al-Bab," said a local militant field commander, Abu Jaafar.

He added that his forces were able to seize control of a medical complex, a key roundabout, and a school building in the town's west side in operations that began on midnight.

"We've faced some difficulty with Daesh snipers -- there were more than 10 snipers last night that surprised our troops," Abu Jaafar added. "More than 10 of our forces were killed (Monday), and dozens wounded, because of the mines planted by this treacherous organization," he noted.

Source: Press TV

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Isis threatens to kill 350,000 children trapped in city if they try to leave

Isis threatens to kill 350,000 children trapped in city if they try to leave

Mosul: Isis threatens to kill 350,000 children trapped in city if they try to leave

'There’s a huge risk for families  - if Isis see a family trying to escape, they kill them on the spot'
An estimated 350,000 children are currently trapped in siege-like conditions and risk execution under Isis in the next stage of conflict, aid agencies have warned.

Half of the 750,000 trapped civilians in west Mosul are children who risk being killed by the terror-group if they try to flee, Save the Children reported.

Those who remain are at extreme risk from the devastating impact of artillery and other explosive weapons if they are deployed in the narrow and more densely-packed streets of the western districts.

Isis hails Trump’s Muslim immigration restrictions as a 'blessed ban'
More than three months into the Mosul offensive, the humanitarian crisis inside western sections of the city is reported to be increasingly desperate, with more causalities expected as Iraq’s infantry enters the city.

Three quarters of a million civilians are said to be out of reach of aid agencies and running out of food, water and basic supplies.

Trade routes to west Mosul have been cut off for months and bridges connecting the newly recaptured areas of the east to the districts of the west have been destroyed.

There are currently no safe routes out for residents in the parts of the city still under Isis control.
Save the Children is calling on Iraqi forces and their allies, including the US and UK, to take every possible precaution to minimise the risk to civilians and ensure children and their families have safe routes to escape the warzone as soon as possible.

Mahmoud, a medic living in a newly recaptured area of eastern Mosul, told the charity: “I talked to my family in West Mosul, they are staying inside and don’t have anything to eat or drink.

"No one is able to get the children anything, there’s no food or milk for babies – the markets are empty and the supplies they stockpiled have almost run out.

“There’s a huge risk for families trying to flee - if Isis see a family trying to escape, they kill them on the spot.

I tried to get mine out and agreed with a smuggler to bring them here, but he opted out because he saw a family of nine killed in front of his eyes.”

Maurizio Crivallero, Save the Children’s Iraq Country Director said civilians have so far made up nearly half of all casualties in the conflict, but in the narrow and densely populated old city streets they are at even greater risk as fighting intensifies.

"Children are trapped with nowhere to escape,” he said.

“To a child it doesn’t matter where the bombs come from — it’s where they land that matters. The impact of explosive weapons in west Mosul is likely to be deadly and indiscriminate.

"We must ensure that every effort humanly possible is made to protect children and their families from harm.

"Once families have made it out, we can reach them with life-saving aid and start helping children to rebuild their lives after more than two years under ISIS rule. But right now, hundreds of thousands of children remain trapped in West Mosul in a situation which grows more dangerous by the day.”

Read more on Souce

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Thousands of Muslims donate 10 tonnes of food to help homeless Londoners at Christmas

Thousands of Muslims donate 10 tonnes of food to help homeless Londoners at Christmas

Muslim Londoners have donated 10 tonnes of food to help homeless people this Christmas.

Thousands of people attended a food drive at East London Mosque in order to make and collect donations. An estimated 7,500 people attended in total, The London Evening Standard reports.

After they attended Friday prayers volunteers gathered the supplies, which include rice, pasta, cereal, tinned goods and other items. Donations came from local businesses, colleges, schools and universities.

The donations will now be given to local people in need, including those who are living on the streets. More than 90 per cent of the food will be given to people who are not of the Muslim faith.

Leaders of other religious groups in the community also attended to show their support. Christian Reverend Gary Bradley was among those who backed the drive, saying it was an example of people from “all faiths working together for a common humanity”.

read more on source

Friday, August 19, 2016

After #AylanKurdi, a picture of this Syrian boy shocks world - Watch heartbreaking video >>

After #AylanKurdi, a picture of this Syrian boy shocks world - Watch heartbreaking video >>

Damascus: A heart-rending picture of a 5-year-old boy from Syria has taken the Internet by storm.

Omran Daqneesh, a kid from Syria's Aleppo was seriously injured, after he was lifted from the rubble of a damaged building. The residential place was bombed by a devastating airstrike by the pro-Assad forces.

The haunting image of the kid covered in dust and with blood on his face highlights the desperation of the Syrian civil war.

A video has also been released by Aleppo Medica Centre, which shows the 5-year-old running his hand over his blood-covered face, looks at his hands and wipes them on the ambulance chair.

The situation in Aleppo has been catastrophic since mid-2012. It has been divided between opposition control in the east and government forces in the west, with both sides exchanging accusations of indiscriminate attacks against civilians.

The Independent Commission of Inquiry of Syria SAID over 25 hospitals and clinics including maternity hospitals, paediatric units and emergency wards were destroyed by aerial bombardments since the beginning of 2016.

More than 290,000 people have been killed since Syria`s conflict erupted in March 2011 with anti-government protests that escalated into a brutal multi-front war.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Spotlight: Russia carries out first Syria strikes from Iranian airbase

Spotlight: Russia carries out first Syria strikes from Iranian airbase

MOSCOW/WASHINGTON, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- Russia said Tuesday its bombers took off from an Iranian airbase to strike terrorist targets in Syria, in an unprecedented move that deepens its involvement in the Middle East and underscores Moscow's increasingly close ties with Tehran.

Russian defense ministry said that Tu-22M3 long-range bombers and Su-34 frontline bombers took off from Hamadan base in western Iran and "carried out a group air strike against the Islamic State (IS) and Nusra Front terrorist groups' targets in the provinces of Aleppo, Deir ez-Zor and Idlib."

Su-30cm and Su-35s fighters, based in Hmeimim air base in Syria, provided cover for the mission, according to the ministry.

Five large warehouses with weapons, ammunition, fuel and lubricants, three command posts and several training camps have been destroyed, and a significant number of terrorists have been killed in the campaign, the ministry added.

It was the first time Russia has used the territory of another nation, apart from Syria itself, to launch such strikes since Moscow launched a bombing campaign against IS targets inside Syria last September.

The Iranian deployment will boost Russia's image as a central player in the Middle East and allow the Russian air force to reduce flight times and increase bombing payloads.

Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, said on Tuesday that Iran and Russia are "strategic" allies in fighting terrorism in Syria.

"Tehran-Moscow cooperation in the fight against terrorism in Syria is strategic and we exchange capacities and potentialities in this field," Shamkhani said.

Shamkhani also said that Iran will continue to provide military advice to countries plagued with terrorism, including Syria.

The Pentagon on Tuesday confirmed that the Russian military notified the U.S.-led coalition currently fighting the IS before Russian bombers carried out airstrikes in Syria from Iran.

"The Russians did notify the coalition as per the memorandum of understanding (MOU) for safety of flight," said Pentagon spokesman Christopher Garver, referring to the U.S.-Russian MOU signed last October to avoid an inadvertent clash in Syrian airspace during their own airstrikes against terrorist targets there.

"They (Russians) activated that system, as we have in the past. They informed us they were coming through and we ensured safety of flight as those bombers passed through the area and toward their target and then when they passed out again," Garver said at a press conference.

While he insisted that U.S.-led coalition operations in either Iraq or Syria were not impacted during the time, Garver refused to comment on whether U.S. aircraft had to be moved out of the path.

"We knew in time when they activate the safety of flight memorandum of understanding instructions. It's not a lot of time, but it's enough, and it was enough time to make sure that we could ensure safety of flight," said Garver.

Garver also declined to comment on whether the United States was aware of any major preparations on the Iranian base beforehand.

Women burn burqas, men cut beards: Watch Syrians celebrate independence from ISIS

Women burn burqas, men cut beards: Watch Syrians celebrate independence from ISIS

It's been 70 years since India celebrated independence. Most people celebrating the day today have forgotten what it was to be shackled. Not these Syrians, however. For them, the taste of independence is recent and fresh. And finally, in all the images of destruction and death, there comes a few images of hope. Scenes from the video above show what true joy, jubilation and relief looks like.

These Syrians were finally rescued after two years spent under oppressive rule by the Islamic State. They, and thousands of others, were rescued from ISIL by rebel groups after months of fighting in the city of Manbij, where ISIS forces used 2,000 Syrians as human shields.

The scenes are truly a sight to behold. Multitudes of people run past the demolished buildings cheering, smoking cigarettes and dancing. Not only that, men have been shaving their beards and women have been burning burqas as a way to celebrate their freedom, as a way to rebel against the ultra conservative Sharia law that ISIS forces on people.

Here's a news report by Syrian Kurdish news agency ANHA. The general spirit of bonhomie and happiness in the air is truly infectious. Children clap and smile as one of the women sets fire to a burqa.


Saturday, August 13, 2016

Daesh Takfiris kidnap nearly 2,000 civilians in northern Syria

Daesh Takfiris kidnap nearly 2,000 civilians in northern Syria

Members of the Daesh Takfiri group have kidnapped thousands of civilians in a Kurdish-populated city of the strategic northwestern province of Aleppo as the victims were fleeing heavy fighting between an alliance of Arab and Kurdish forces on one side and extremists on the other.

“While withdrawing from a district of Manbij, Takfiris abducted around 2,000 civilians,” the Kurdish-Arab alliance, known as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), said on Friday.

The report came shortly after the SDF announced that they had launched a final assault to flush the remaining Daesh militants out of Manbij, located 446 kilometers (277 miles) north of the capital Damascus.

Friday's attack is “the last operation and the last assault,” Sharfan Darwish, a spokesman for the SDF said.

Darwish went on to say that roughly 100 Daesh terrorists holed up in downtown Manbij were using civilians as human shields.

Manbij lies along the only supply line of Daesh between the Syrian-Turkish border to the north and the group’s main Syria stronghold of Raqqah, which lies to the southeast.

Its liberation would mark the biggest strategic defeat for Daesh in Syria since July 2015, when the terrorist group lost the strategically important town of Tal Abyad on Syria’s border with Turkey.

The SDF fighters launched an operation to retake Manbij two months ago. The city has been under Daesh control for more than two years.

Meanwhile, a convoy of 40 trucks carrying 1,000 metric tons of food supplies arrived in Syria’s northwestern city of Aleppo on Thursday evening.

The newly-arrived supplies are said to be sufficient for two months.

Aleppo Governor Mohammad Marwan al-Olabi said local officials were adopting all necessary measures to meet the city residents’ requirements.

Syrian government forces, backed by fighters from popular defense groups, are trying to purge foreign-sponsored Takfiri terrorists from areas under their control in Aleppo. The army has so far managed to open up several safe passages for civilians to leave the beleaguered city.

The United Nations has warned that two million people could be trapped in Aleppo as government forces and Takfiri militants are gearing up for a decisive battle for the city.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura estimates that over 400,000 people have been killed in the conflict.

Back in 2014, the UN said it would no more update its official death toll for Syria because it could not verify the figures that it received from various sources.

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