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Syrian war: Reports of chlorine gas attack on rebel-held Eastern Ghouta

A chlorine gas attack has been carried out on a besieged rebel-held enclave on the outskirts of the Syrian capital Damascus, reports say. People in the Eastern Ghouta region, which is under daily bombardment, reported a smell of gas after a missile strike, the BBC has learned. Health workers said six people were treated for minor breathing problems. Some 400,000 locals have been under siege from Russian-backed government forces since 2013. There have been a number of reports of chlorine gas attacks since Syria’s civil war broke out, but the…

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US to stop arming anti-IS Syrian Kurdish YPG militia – Turkey

The US is to stop supplying arms to the Syrian Kurdish militia the YPG, Turkey has said. Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said President Donald Trump had made the promise in a phone call to his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The White House said it was making “adjustments” to its support for partners inside Syria but did not explicitly name the YPG. Turkey has long complained about US support for the group. Washington has viewed the YPG as a key player in the fight against so-called Islamic State (IS), but…

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Deir al-Zour: Syrian army retakes IS-held city as Iraqis also advance

Media playback is unsupported on your device The Syrian army has retaken Deir al-Zour, the last major stronghold of so-called Islamic State (IS) in Syria, state TV says. Other reports said the Syrian army and its allies were clearing the last pockets of resistance from IS. IS had held most of the city since 2014. It was important because of its proximity to the border with Iraq. Meanwhile Iraqi forces have entered one of the last towns under IS control on the other side of the border. They say they…

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Raqqa: IS 'capital' falls to US-backed Syrian forces

A US-backed alliance of Syrian Kurdish and Arab fighters says it has taken full control of so-called Islamic State’s one-time “capital” of Raqqa. Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) spokesman Talal Sello said the fighting was over after a five-month assault. Clearing operations were now under way to uncover any jihadist sleeper cells and remove landmines, he added. An official statement declaring victory in the city and the end of three years of IS rule is expected to be made soon. Earlier on Tuesday, the SDF cleared the last two major IS…

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Aleppo battle: Syrian city 'back under government control'

The Syrian army has retaken control of the besieged city of Aleppo, following the evacuation of the last group of civilians and rebels, a statement says. A UN official said earlier that more than 34,000 people had been removed since last Thursday. The evacuees have been taken to rebel-held territory in the countryside west of Aleppo and in Idlib province. This is a major victory for President Bashar al-Assad, whose campaign was aided by Russian air strikes. What next for the evacuees? In pictures: Aleppo evacuations The evacuation of the…

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