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Air Strikes

In Syria strikes, U.S. blurs red line for intervention

WASHINGTON: With the latest U.S. missile strikes, President Donald Trump appears to have reset America’s red line for military intervention in Syria over the use of chemical weapons. What’s unclear is where that red line now stands. The United States said its strikes were a response to President Bashar al-Assad’s chemical weapons attack on April 7 that administration officials say employed chlorine and perhaps even sarin, a more deadly nerve agent. “A large body of information indicates that the Syrian regime used…

OPCW continuing mission into Syria gas attack despite air strikes

THE HAGUE: Experts from the world's global chemical arms watchdog are continuing their mission to probe a gas attack in Douma despite Western air strikes in Syria, the body said Saturday. The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons has been "working in close collaboration" with UN security experts "to assess the situation and ensure the safety of the team," it said. It vowed in its statement that the fact-finding mission due to go to Douma later Saturday "will continue its deployment to the Syrian Arab…

Russia’s US ambassador warns of consequences for Syria strikes

WASHINGTON: Russia’s ambassador to the United States on Friday warned that there would be consequences for the US-led military strikes on Syria, adding that it was not acceptable to insult Russia’s president. “A pre-designed scenario is being implemented,” Russian Ambassador Anatoly Antonov said on Twitter. “Again, we are being threatened. We warned that such actions will not be left without consequences.” “Insulting the President of Russia is unacceptable and inadmissible,” he added. “The US - the possessor of the…

US and allies launch air strikes on Syria chemical weapons sites

WASHINGTON: U.S., British and French forces pounded Syria with air strikes early on Saturday in response to a poison gas attack that killed dozens of people last week, in the biggest intervention by Western powers against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. U.S. President Donald Trump announced the military action from the White House late on Friday. As he spoke, explosions rocked Damascus. Trump said he was prepared to sustain the response until Assad’s government stopped its use of chemical weapons. British Prime…

Rescuers say cannot keep up with air strikes battering Syria’s Ghouta

BEIRUT: Rescuers in Syria’s eastern Ghouta said the bombing would not let up long enough for them to count the bodies, in one of the bloodiest air assaults of the seven-year war. Warplanes pounded the rebel enclave on Saturday, the seventh day in a row of a fierce escalation by Damascus and its allies, an emergency service, a witness and a monitoring group said. Residents holed up in basements and medical charities decried attacks on a dozen hospitals, as the United Nations pleaded for a truce in Ghouta, the only big…

US-led coalition in Iraq and Syria acknowledges more civilian deaths

WASHINGTON: The US-led coalition fighting the IS group in Syria and Iraq acknowledged on Thursday the deaths of 16 more civilians in air strikes, increasing the toll of civilians killed in three years to at least 817. The coalition said in a statement that it had completed a review in November of 101 reports of potential civilian casualties, of which 92 were deemed non-credible. The remaining nine, relating to strikes between March 20 and October 17, were considered credible and resulted in 11 civilian casualties.…

Air strikes hit Yemen’s rebel-held capital

SANAA: Yemen's rebel-held capital was struck by overnight air raids that continued well into Sunday, targeting the defence ministry and a popular public square, an official said. An air raid hit the Sanaa defence ministry, which is controlled by a rebel alliance based in the capital, an official with the local rebel-run government said. Another strike on Sunday targeted Sabaeen Square, frequently the site of mass rallies and protests in the city, the official said. Read More: Car bomb kills at least five Yemeni…

Air strikes kill 28 civilians in Syria safe zone: monitor

BEIRUT: At least 28 civilians were killed in air strikes on northwestern Syria where a planned safe zone has been overshadowed by a bombing campaign against militants, a monitor said on Saturday. Four children were among the dead in the overnight strikes on the town of Amanaz, in Idlib province near the Turkish border, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. The Britain-based watchdog had earlier reported 12 dead in the strikes on the town in Harem district around 20 kilometres (12 miles) northwest of the…

US strikes IS camp in Libya, killing 17: official

WASHINGTON: US forces carried out six "precision air strikes" against an Islamic State camp in Libya, killing 17 people, the US Africa Command said on Sunday. The command said the air strikes were conducted on Friday, in coordination with Libya's Government of National Accord, hitting a desert camp 150 miles (240 kilometers) southeast of the city of Sirte. "The camp was used by ISIS to move fighters in and out of the country; stockpile weapons and equipment; and to plot and conduct attacks," it said in a statement…

Risk of Afghan civilian casualties could damp support for U.S. strikes on militants

KABUL: U.S. President Donald Trump’s plans to step up air strikes on Islamist militants in Afghanistan risk increasing civilian casualties and stirring resentment, despite an initial welcome by Afghan officials and international allies. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has avoided vocal criticisms of errant air strikes, but in previous years they sparked intense friction and soured ties between his predecessor, Hamid Karzai, and the international coalition in Afghanistan. With the U.S. set to resume a more active role in…