conflict

Syrian opposition rules out future role for President al-Assad

The Syrian opposition said Friday it would not accept any role for President Bashar al-Assad in the future of the war-torn country, reacting to a recent US shift saying that removing al-Assad is no longer a priority for Washington.

Russian Army integrates breakaway forces of Georgian province

Parts of the small fighting forces of the Georgian breakaway province of South Ossetia have been placed under Russian military control, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Friday.

Palestinians, UN slam Israel's new settlement plan

Palestinians, Israeli activists and the UN lambasted the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday, a day after it gave the go-ahead for the first new West Bank settlement in a quarter of a century.

Turkish opposition: Imprisoned party chief has gone on hunger strike

The head of Turkey's pro-Kurdish opposition party has launched a hunger strike from prison.

Trump approves more aggressive strikes in Somalia

US President Donald Trump has approved a Defence Department plan allowing more aggressive action against terrorist group al-Shabaab in Somalia, the Pentagon said Thursday.

Ukrainian leader Poroshenko orders ceasefire in conflict-ridden east

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko on Thursday ordered his country's military to withdraw its weapons and implement a new ceasefire starting this weekend.

Civilian deaths prompt ban on heavy weapons for Iraqi forces in Mosul

Iraqi forces fighting to drive Islamic State militants from Mosul have been ordered not to use heavy weapons after a recent spike in civilian deaths, as visiting UN chief Antonio Guterres stressed Thursday that protecting civilians was an "absolute priority."

UN asks world for help as Syrian refugee numbers exceed 5 million

The number of Syrians who have fled the war in their country has risen above 5 million, in what is the world's largest refugee crisis, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said Thursday in Geneva.

Three killed, a dozen wounded in Baghdad truck bombing

At least three people were killed late Wednesday and 12 others were wounded when a truck laden with explosives blew up at the southern entrance to Baghdad, the Iraqi al-Sumaria broadcaster's website reported.

US general says Russians may be giving weapons to Taliban

The top US general overseeing operations in Afghanistan said on Wednesday it is possible that Russia has been delivering weapons to the Taliban.

Turkish prime minister says Syria operation has reached an end

The Turkish military operation in northern Syria, ongoing since August, has reached its conclusion, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said on Wednesday.

At least five killed in blast in central Syria, monitor says

At least five people were killed Wednesday in an explosion that hit a minibus in a government-controlled area of central Syria, a monitoring group said.

At least five Afghan soldiers dead in Taliban attack

At least five Afghan soldiers are dead after Taliban forces attacked a checkpoint in Afghanistan's southern Kandahar province overnight, officials said on Tuesday.

Amnesty: US-led airstrikes on Mosul may have broken international law

Amnesty International accused the US-led coalition in Iraq on Tuesday of conducting airstrikes in areas of Mosul where it should have known civilian families were trying to keep safe in their homes.

Colombia prosecutor questions ELN rebel's peace plans after massacre

Colombia's chief prosecutor on Monday called into question the ELN guerrilla group's commitment to peace talks with the government after the group was accused of killing five people in an area where it has clashed with drug cartels.

Kurdish-led forces briefly halt fighting around Syria's Euphrates Dam

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) briefly halted fighting around the Euphrates Dam in Syria after warnings that it might collapse, a Kurdish source and a monitoring group told dpa.

More than 1,500 children killed in Yemen since March 2016, UN says

Yemen saw a 70-per-cent uptick in child deaths during the past year - for a total of 1,546 - the United Nations children’s agency UNICEF said in a report on Monday.

Around 2,500 civilians, rebels to leave besieged area central Syria

Some 2,500 people will leave the last opposition-held neighbourhood in the central Syrian city of Homs on Monday, the second batch of residents and rebels to be evacuated under a Russia-brokered deal.

Six aid workers killed and dumped on road in South Sudan

Six aid workers have been killed in an ambush in violence-plagued South Sudan, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said Sunday.

Five dead in Ukrainian military helicopter crash

A Ukrainian military helicopter has crashed in the east of the country, killing the two passengers and three crew members, military spokesman Alexander Motusynaik said in Kiev on Sunday.

Rebels fight for control of dam, airbase near IS stronghold in Syria

Clashes intensified Sunday on the western outskirts of al-Raqqa as US-backed rebels were trying to capture control of a strategic dam and military airport from the control of Islamic State extremist militia, according to a watchdog and rebels.

Pakistan to start fencing off border with Afghanistan

Pakistan on Sunday began fencing off its 2430-kilometre border with Afghanistan to restrict the movement of Islamist militants and end allegations of cross-border incursions.

Thousands of Yemenis protest against Saudi forces on war anniversary

Thousands of Yemenis gathered in rebel-held Sana’a on Sunday to protest the fact that it's been two years since Saudi Arabian forces began an air campaign in support of a government that was ousted from the capital years ago.

Hamas closes border with Israel after senior figure killed

The Islamic Hamas movement on Sunday closed the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel, in a sign of growing tensions after the assassination of one of Hamas' senior figures.

Pentagon: US airstrike in Afghanistan kills al-Qaeda leader

Qari Yasin, an al-Qaeda leader, was killed in a US airstrike in Afghanistan earlier this month, the Defence Department in Washington said Saturday.

Iraq, US to investigate Mosul civilian killings

The United States and Iraq said on Saturday they would investigate reports that hundreds of civilians have been killed during the fight to retake Mosul from the Islamic State extremist group.

Mogadishu official and bodyguards killed in drive-by shooting

A Mogadishu city official and his two bodyguards were killed in a drive-by shooting in the Somali capital on Saturday, police and witnesses said.

Watchdog: At least 32 killed in airstrikes on rebel areas in Syria

Eight children were among at least 32 people killed in airstrikes on two different rebel-held areas in Syria, a monitoring group reported Saturday.

Hamas claims Israel assassinated one of its leaders in Gaza

Senior Hamas movement officials accused Israel on Friday of assassinating of one of its leaders in the Gaza Strip.

Syrian army retakes parts of East Damascus as Geneva talks continue

The Syrian army said on Friday that its units had managed to retake all positions in eastern Damascus that had been infiltrated by opposition fighters earlier this week.

Over 3,000 civilians killed in Mosul fight, source says

More than 3,000 civilians have been killed in Mosul since Iraq started a US-led campaign to retake the northern city from the Islamic State extremist militia more than a month ago, an official source said Friday.

French defence minister: Battle for al-Raqqa to start in days

A military offensive aimed at dislodging Islamic State from its Syrian stronghold of al-Raqqa is to begin "in the coming days," French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said on Friday.

More than 100 civilians killed in Mosul blast

More than 100 civilians were killed in a powerful explosion in a residential area of Mosul, where Iraq is battling to drive out Islamic State from its last key stronghold in the country, an army officer and an activist said Thursday.

UN: 400,000 people trapped in Mosul's old city

Some 400,000 people are unable to leave the old city of Mosul as the Iraqi army tries to capture the area that is still under control of Islamic State extremists, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said Thursday.

Armed groups occupying schools prevent children's education in CAR

Armed groups in the Central African Republic have prevented children from getting an education for several years by occupying, looting and damaging school buildings, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said Thursday.

Global coalition 'firmly united' in effort to defeat Islamic State

The global coalition to defeat and destroy Islamic State recommitted itself to the effort Wednesday, calling for "an integrated, multidimensional, and comprehensive approach."

US, Kurdish forces land near IS stronghold in Syria, watchdog says

US and allied Kurd-led forces landed near the Islamic State's de facto capital in Syria in a move aimed at tightening the noose around the extremist militia there, a monitoring group said Wednesday.

Seoul says North Korea missile test failed

North Korea carried out a missile test that failed on Wednesday, South Korea's Defence Ministry said.

33 civilians killed in airstrikes on IS stronghold in Syria

At least 33 civilians have been killed in airstrikes believed to have been mounted by US-led coalition planes near Islamic State's de facto capital in Syria, a monitoring group said Wednesday. 

Palestinian killed by Israeli tank fire near Gaza security fence

A Palestinian was killed near the security fence in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday after the Israeli army fired at three people, a spokesman for the enclave's Health Ministry said.

Syrian opposition groups agree to take part in Geneva peace talks

Syrian opposition groups have agreed to take part in the next round of peace talks in Geneva, the office of UN special envoy Staffan de Mistura confirmed on Tuesday.

Airstrikes, clashes as rebels launch attack in eastern Damascus

Airstrikes and clashes intensified Tuesday as Syrian opposition fighters and forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad fight for control of areas in eastern Damascus, according to a monitoring group, rebels and a resident in the city.

At least 13 killed, 33 injured in Baghdad car bombing claimed by IS

At least 13 people have been killed and 33 injured in a car bombing in a Shiite-dominated neighbourhood in southern Baghdad, security sources and witnesses told dpa.

Russian forces set up in Kurdish enclave in north Syria: spokesman

Russian forces have established a presence in the Kurdish enclave of Efrin in northern Syria, on the border with Turkey, a spokesman for the main Kurdish militia told dpa on Monday.

UN: 38,000 Afghans displaced by conflict since beginning of 2017

The ongoing conflict in Afghanistan has forced 38,110 people to leave their homes since the beginning of 2017, a United Nations report said on Monday.

UAE denies attack on refugee boat in Yemen that killed 42

The United Arab Emirates denied on Monday targeting a refugee boat off the western coast of Yemen and called for an international investigation into the incident that killed 42 people last week.

At least 30,000 displaced by fighting at China-Myanmar border

At least 30,000 people have fled fighting in Myanmar's northern Shan State, the UN said on Monday.

US and Ethiopia train AU soldiers to fight al-Shabaab in Somalia

Military personnel from the African Union mission in Somalia (AMISOM) gathered Monday in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa for training aimed at countering the threat from the radical Islamist group al-Shabaab.

Syrian government retakes areas seized by rebels in eastern Damascus

Syrian government forces regained control Monday of areas taken by jihadists the day before in a surprise assault near the centre of the capital Damascus, a monitoring group said.

Turkey: More than 2,000 detained on terror allegations in last week

More than 2,000 people have been detained by Turkish authorities in the past week for alleged links to terrorism, the Interior Ministry said on Monday.

Pakistan prepares to reopen Afghan border crossings

Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Monday ordered the immediate reopening of the country’s border crossings with Afghanistan, more than a month after their closure.

Islamic State militants put up 'fierce resistance' in Mosul

Islamic State fighters have so far refused to yield to an ongoing US-backed campaign to drive them from the centre of Mosul, the last key stronghold of the extremist militia in the country, security officials said Sunday.

Syrian regime regains control in Damascus after fight with jihadists

Syrian regime forces Sunday launched a counter-attack and regained an area near the centre of Damascus hours after jihadists mounted a surprise assault in the adjacent eastern part of the city, a monitoring group reported.

North Korea tests new high-thrust engine, hails 'historic day'

North Korea has tested a new type of high-thrust engine, state media reported on Sunday, with leader Kim Jong Un hailing it as "a historic day which can be called 'March 18' revolution'."

Iraqi forces advance on Mosul mosque where IS declared caliphate

Iraqi forces were closing in on a mosque in Mosul where the Islamic State extremist militia declared a cross-border caliphate nearly three years ago, a security official said.

Syrian rebels, residents leave besieged Homs area in ceasefire deal

Residents and fighters began leaving a rebel district in the central Syrian city of Homs, around a week after a ceasefire agreement was reached with the government, state media and a monitoring group reported.

42 dead in attack on migrant boat off Yemen; 22 dead in mosque strike

Forty-two migrants died when an airstrike hit their ship off Yemen's western coast, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said Friday.

Airstrike off Yemen coast kills 31 Somali migrants

Thirty-one Somali migrants were reportedly killed when an airstrike hit their boat off Yemen's western coast, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said Friday.

Israel carries out air raids in Syria, anti-aircraft weapons fired

Israel carried out air raids in Syria on Friday, with Syria retaliating using anti-aircraft weapons, in one of the more serious exchanges of fire in the six years of civil war in the country.

Report: US denies deadly Syria mosque bombing

The US military on Thursday said it had killed a number of extremists in an airstrike in Syria, but denied it was responsible for the bombing of a mosque in which activists say at least 42 people were killed.

At least 46 dead in Syria mosque bombing, monitor says

At least 46 people have been killed and more than 100 injured in overnight strikes by unidentified jets on a mosque in northern Syria, a monitoring group said on Friday.

Powerful Libyan militia rejects ceasefire pact in Tripoli

A powerful Libyan militia announced its rejection of a ceasefire agreement for the city of Tripoli hours after it was made public Thursday, spelling potential trouble for the deal.

Al-Qaeda-linked group distances itself from deadly Damascus blasts

An al-Qaeda-linked alliance Thursday denied it was behind two bombings that killed at least 43 people and injured more than 100 in the Syrian capital, Damascus.

At least 43 killed, over 100 wounded in two Damascus suicide bombings

Two suicide bombings in Damascus targeting a court complex and a restaurant left 43 people dead and 117 wounded Wednesday as Syria's devastating civil war entered its seventh year.

Ukraine imposes total blockade on rebel-held eastern areas

Ukraine's Security Council has decided to impose a total blockade on goods being transported to or from areas controlled by pro-Russian rebel groups, President Petro Poroshenko said Wednesday.

Indonesia checking reports militant killed in Syria

Authorities in Indonesia were on Wednesday checking reports that an Indonesian militant fighting alongside the Islamic State group had died in a suicide bombing.

UN report: South Sudanese leaders plunder country's wealth

South Sudanese leaders have plundered national resources, leaving the international community to deal with a hunger crisis in the oil-rich country, UN rights experts reported Tuesday in Geneva.

Eastern Libyan forces claim control of oil terminals

Libya's eastern military forces, affiliated with strongman Khalifa Haftar, have started an offensive to recapture the town of Ras Lanuf, where fighting over oil terminals in the area recently erupted, local media reported on Tuesday.

Dozens killed in army clashes with ethnic rebels in Myanmar

Dozens of Burmese soldiers have died this month in clashes with an ethnic armed group on the Chinese border, the country's military said Tuesday in a statement.

One woman killed, many injured in minibus bomb attack in Kabul

At least one woman was killed and 23 people injured in an attack targeting a mini bus in the Afghan capital Kabul, an official said on Monday.

Unknown rebels abduct American and Swedish UN staffers in Congo

Two United Nation staffers - one American, one Swedish - are among six people recently abducted by unknown rebels in central Congo, the government announced Monday.

Eight aid workers kidnapped in South Sudan

Eight local aid workers belonging to a US-based Christian charity have been abducted by rebel forces in South Sudan, an army spokesman said Monday.

Syrian rebels say they will not attend this week's Astana talks

Syrian rebels will not attend the Russian-backed talks scheduled to take place Tuesday and Wednesday in Kazakhstan's capital, Astana.

Two car bombings kill seven in Somali capital

Two car bombings killed at least seven people and injured dozens of others in the Somali capital Mogadishu on Monday, police said.

UN: More than 26,000 Afghans displaced by conflict so far this year

Ongoing conflict has forced 26,089 Afghans to leave their homes since the beginning of 2017, a United Nations report said on Monday, with better weather expected to make the situation worse as fighting intensifies.

Over 40 per cent of IS-controlled Mosul retaken, Iraq says

Iraqi forces have retaken more than 40 per cent of Islamic State-controlled Mosul as part of an ongoing campaign to drive the militant organization from its last key stronghold in the country, a senior commander said on Sunday.

Death toll in Damascus twin bombings rises to 74, monitor says

The death toll in twin blasts that hit a religious site in the Syrian capital has risen to 74 people, a monitoring group reported on Sunday.

Pro-government Iraqi militia finds 500 bodies at prison near Mosul

A pro-government Shiite Iraqi militia said Saturday they have discovered a mass grave containing the remains of around 500 bodies at a prison located north-west of Mosul.

46 dead, dozens injured in twin blasts in Damascus, monitor says

At least 30 people are dead after a pair of apparently synchronized blasts in Damascus, a monitoring group reported Saturday.

Iraqi forces reclaim Mosul rail facility from Islamic State

Iraqi forces have retaken a key rail facility in Mosul from Islamic State as part of an ongoing US-backed campaign to dislodge the extremist militia from the northern city, a security official said Saturday.

Saudi-led bombardment of Yemen market leaves 22 civilians dead

At least 22 civilians are dead after Saudi-led jet forces bombarded a marketplace in western Yemen, a local security official said.

Trump invites Abbas to Washington for talks, Palestinians say

US President Donald Trump on Friday called Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and invited him to visit Washington in the near future, the official Palestinian news agency WAFA reported.

Turkish artillery targeted Syrian forces and US-backed units

Turkish-backed operations in northern Syria are attacking Syrian government troops outside the flashpoint city of Minbij, with several people reported killed and injured in recent days, local sources told dpa on Friday.

More than 20,000 flee Myanmar conflict, cross border into China

More than 20,000 refugees were crowding the Chinese-Myanmar border area on Friday, fleeing clashes between the army and rebels in northern Myanmar, according to the Chinese authorities and private donors.

US deploys 400 Marines to Syria, nearly doubling troop presence there

The US military confirmed Thursday that an extra 400 US troops have been deployed to Syria, including Marines who will support a major offensive to recapture al-Raqqa, Islamic State's de-facto capital in the country.

Monitor: 30 killed in airstrikes on Islamic State-held Syrian areas

At least 30 civilians were killed on Thursday in a series of airstrikes on two areas controlled by the Islamic State extremist militia in Syria, a monitoring group reported.

Attack on Tikrit wedding kills 30, IS loses prison near Mosul

At least 30 people were killed when bombers struck a wedding ceremony late Wednesday in a village in central northern Iraq, just hours after local military announced it had taken control of an Islamic State prison near Mosul.

US stands by military drills with South Korea

The US indicated Wednesday it would continue joint military exercises with South Korea following a proposal by China that the drills be suspended in exchange for North Korea halting its nuclear activities.

Report: US Marines equipped with artillery deploy to Syria

US Marines have arrived at an outpost in Syria as the United States weighs a plan to take back the city of Raqqa from Islamic State, a news report said Wednesday.

UN: Yemen aid plan generates only 3 per cent of targeted funding

A plan aimed at offering badly needed help to people in war-ravaged Yemen has only received 3 per cent of the targeted funding, the UN humanitarian agency said Wednesday.

China calls on N Korea to suspend nukes, US to stop military drills

North Korea should suspend its nuclear activities in exchange for the US and South Korea halting their annual joint military drills, China proposed on Wednesday, as tensions between the two sides escalate.

Ongoing attack on Kabul military hospital leaves 2 dead, 25 injured

An explosion rocked the centre of Kabul on Wednesday morning, in an area where the US embassy and the offices of many international organziations are located.

Iraqi premier visits Mosul after forces capture government complex

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi arrived in Mosul to inspect combat operations on Tuesday, hours after the forces captured a government complex in the western part of the city from Islamic State militants.

Russia rejects Ukraine's conflict allegations in UN's highest court

Kiev's claims before the United Nations' highest court alleging that Russia participated in the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine are groundless, Russia's lawyer said Tuesday.

Report: Attacks on Afghan clinics, staff hit children hardest

Attacks by all conflict parties in Afghanistan have impacted children's health the most, a report of a children's rights organization said on Tuesday.

Russian, Turkish, US military chiefs holding surprise talks on Syria

The chiefs of the Russian, Turkish and US militaries were meeting Tuesday in Turkey for a previously unannounced session about Syria, according to statements from the participants.

US-backed militia hands over posts near Minbij to Syrian forces

A US-backed militia positioned in northern Syria said on Tuesday it has handed areas west of Minbij to Syrian government forces, an official source said. 

China vows 'necessary measures' against US-S Korea missile system

China says it "will take necessary measures to maintain [its] security interests" against a US anti-missile system deployed to South Korea, according to a Foreign Ministry spokesman.

US deploys anti-missile system to South Korea

The United States has begun deploying its THAAD missile defence system to South Korea, the US Pacific Command confirmed on Tuesday, a day after North Korea launched four ballistic missiles into the Sea of Japan.

Former Guantanamo Bay inmate killed in US airstrike in Yemen

A US airstrike in Yemen against al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) killed a man who was held prisoner by the US military at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, a Pentagon spokesman confirmed Monday.