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Syria army seizes airbase from IS: military source

BEIRUT: Syria's army captured an airbase in eastern Aleppo from the Islamic State group on Saturday, after more than two months of fierce clashes, a military source and monitor said. The Jarrah airbase had been under IS control since January 2014, when the jihadists seized it from rebels who had captured it a year earlier. "Regime forces took control of the Jarrah military airport after heavy fighting," said Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitor. "The majority of the…

Afghan defence minister, army chief resign after Taliban attack

KABUL: The Afghan defence minister and his army chief resigned Monday, days after a Taliban attack at a military base in northern Afghanistan killed or wounded more than 100 soldiers, a presidential statement said. "President Ashraf Ghani has accepted the resignation of the defence minister and army chief of staff," the statement from Ghani's office said. Furious Afghans had called for resignations of minister Abdullah Habibi and army chief Qadam Shah Shaheem after the assault outside the northern city of…

Furious Afghans call for resignations after Taliban base attack

KABUL/MAZAR-I-SHARIF: Afghan families buried their dead and the country observed a national day of mourning on Sunday after at least 100 soldiers were killed or wounded in a Taliban attack on a military base, prompting angry calls for ministers and army chiefs to resign. The exact toll from Friday's assault in the northern province of Balkh remained unclear, with some local officials putting the number of dead alone as high as 130. The raid, the deadliest-ever by the Taliban on a military base, underscores their…

Iraqi forces storm Mosul airport, military base

MOSUL: US-backed Iraqi security forces captured Mosul airport on Thursday, state television said, in a major gain in operations to drive Islamic State from the western half of the city. Elite Counter Terrorism forces advanced from the southwestern side and entered the Ghozlani army base along with the southwestern districts of Tal al-Rumman and al-Mamoun. Losing Mosul could spell the end of the Iraqi side of militants' self-styled caliphate in Iraq and Syria, which Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared from…