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July 19, 2018 8:49 AM Syria rebels agree to surrender zone bordering Golan

BEIRUT: Syrian rebels have agreed with government backer Russia to the negotiated surrender of a sensitive southwestern zone bordering the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights, a monitor said Thursday. Quneitra is a thin, crescent-shaped province that lies along the buffer zone with the Israel-occupied Golan to the west. Rebels have held most of the province 5

July 18, 2018 2:58 PM At least 19 drown in refugee boat sinking off north Cyprus

NICOSIA: At least 19 refugees drowned and up to 30 were missing Wednesday after their boat sank in the Mediterranean off the north of Cyprus, local security forces said. The boat was carrying 150 people when it went down off the coast of the breakaway Turkish Cypriot-controlled portion of the island, which is only recognised by Ankara. Over 100 people 5

July 15, 2018 10:49 AM Rebels, families begin evacuating Syria's Daraa city

DARAA, Syria: Syrian rebels and their relatives began evacuating the southern city of Daraa on Sunday, an AFP correspondent and a monitor said, more than seven years after the country's ill-fated uprising erupted there. The transfers were part of a ceasefire deal brokered by government ally Russia, and came after more than two weeks of ferocious bombardment 9

July 5, 2018 8:30 AM Rebel-held south Syria hit by heaviest strikes yet

DARAA, Syria: The Syrian government and its Russian ally pounded rebel-held areas of the southern province of Daraa on Thursday with the heaviest air strikes of a two-week-old offensive, an AFP correspondent and a monitor reported. "Hundreds" of missiles and barrel bombs were unleashed before dawn by both Syrian and Russian aircraft after talks on rebel 12

July 5, 2018 1:06 AM US envoy to work with Sudan to remove from 'terror' list

KHARTOUM: The top US envoy in Sudan vowed Wednesday to work with Khartoum in its efforts to be removed from Washington's "terrorism" blacklist as he welcomed the African country's decision to sever ties with North Korea. In June, Sudan announced its defence firms had scrapped contracts with the Asian pariah state, acknowledging for the first time the existence 11

July 1, 2018 2:45 PM More Syrians leave Lebanon for home

MASNAA: Several dozen Syrian refugees left Lebanon for neighbouring Syria on Sunday as part of returns coordinated between both countries, an AFP reporter and authorities said. A total of 42 Syrians returned voluntarily from Lebanon through the Masnaa crossing to areas in Syria, Lebanese authorities said. A Lebanese coordinator said they were headed 7

June 26, 2018 6:26 AM Israeli missiles strike near Damascus airport: Syrian state media

DAMASCUS: Two Israeli missiles struck targets near Damascus airport early Tuesday, Syrian state media said, while a monitoring group said they hit arms depots for Hezbollah. In a report in the early hours of Tuesday, Syria's state news agency Sana said "two Israeli missiles came down near Damascus international airport". The head of monitoring group 7

June 24, 2018 9:50 AM US tells Syria rebels not to expect help against army assault

BEIRUT: The United States has warned rebels in southern Syria that they should not expect military intervention if government troops launch an assault against them, a rebel commander told AFP Sunday. Russian-backed government forces are preparing an offensive to retake Syria's southern provinces of Daraa and Sweida, still mostly held by rebels who had been backed 6

June 22, 2018 1:15 PM Refugee returns to Syria must be coordinated with UN: Merkel

BEIRUT: The return of Syrian refugees to their homeland can only happen in coordination with the United Nations, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday during her two-day visit to Lebanon. Refugee returns have been a hot-button issue in Lebanon, a small country that has the world's highest number of refugees per capita. "We want to contribute 7

June 14, 2018 10:32 AM Cyprus escorts 61 Syrian refugees safely to shore

NICOSIA: Cypriot authorities have safely escorted a boat carrying 61 Syrian refugees to shore after spotting it off the coast of the Mediterranean island, they said Thursday. The vessel was intercepted late Wednesday evening off the island's northwestern coast after embarking from Turkey, police said. One woman and 60 males, including seven children 16