ANKARA – Turkey said that two more of its soldiers were killed Wednesday in a Syrian government attack in northwestern Syria, as steady clashes between the two national armies continued to rack up casualties. Turkey has sent thousands of troops into the area to support Syrian insurgents holed up there, but hasn't been able to stop the Russian-backed Syrian government offensive to retake the Idlib province. A Syrian opposition war monitor said nine Syrian soldiers were also killed in Turkish drone attacks in the northwestern area. The Turkish Defense Ministry's statement said that the latest Syrian attack on its troops also wounded six soldiers. It did not provide further details.
Anadolu Agency called on other European news media organizations to be more sensitive towards the ongoing tragedy in Syria. A three-day general assembly of the European Alliance of News Agencies (EANA) came to an end on Friday in the Czech capital Prague. Anadolu Agency editor-in-chief Metin Mutanoglu said in a speech that Syria's northwestern Idlib area was under heavy fire by Bashar al-Assad regime forces and that the region was facing a fresh wave of migrants. Mutanoglu underlined that though tens of thousands were forced to leave their homes due to regime attacks, the European news media were not interested enough in the issue. A new migration wave would affect not only Turkey but the rest of Europe as well, he stressed, adding that EANA should thus make a greater effort to draw attention to the humanitarian crisis in war-torn country .
An eight-year-old Syrian girl whose plight touched the world after she was photographed using tuna cans to walk has received prosthetic limbs in Turkey. Maya Merhi, who was born with no legs because of a rare congenital condition, had been living with her father at a refugee camp after fighting forced them from their home in Aleppo province. After fleeing to the northwestern region of Idlib, Maya was photographed struggling to move on homemade prosthetics made from tubes and old tins of tuna. Designed by her father Mohammad, who suffers from the same congenital disorder, the improvised legs were created to protect her from the hot, dirty and dusty ground. With the impromptu prosthetics, Maya was able to walk outside of her tent and could even attend the camp's school.
Mevlut Cavusoglu's comments came a day after Syrian government forces captured 14 villages as they advanced on Idlib, the largest rebel-held enclave in the country's north, amid a wave of airstrikes. The troops aim to reach a rebel-held air base and secure the road linking the capital, Damascus, with the northern city of Aleppo, Syria's largest.
Abu Khayr al-Masri was killed in Syria on Thursday. Abdullah Muhammad Rajab Abd Al-Rahman, better known by his alias Abu Khayr al-Masri, a 59-year-old Egyptian and a longtime top member of al-Qaida, was killed in an American drone strike in Syria, the terrorist group confirmed in a statement on Thursday. The al-Qaida statement said he died in a "treacherous" drone strike it described as a "new crime by America and the crusader coalition," according to Reuters. A Hellfire missile fired by a CIA drone struck the car carrying Abu Khayr al-Masri in Idlib, Syria, on Sunday, Reuters reported. The attack was also reported by CNN, The New York Times, and The Guardian.
Ahmad Hasan Abu Khayr al-Masri, al Qaeda's second in command, reportedly was killed Sunday in a drone strike in Syria. Israeli broadcaster Arutz Sheva cited unconfirmed reports saying a U.S. drone strike near al-Mastoumeh in Idlib province killed al-Masri, who has been described as the general deputy to al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri. Video of the aftermath was posted on YouTube by the Smart News Agency. Al-Masri, 59, was in Iranian custody for a dozen years until 2015 when he was released and moved to Syria. Pictures of the car in which al-Masri reportedly was traveling were posted on Twitter.
WASHINGTON – The Pentagon says a U.S. airstrike in Syria last month killed what the Defense Department describes as a senior al-Qaida leader who once had ties to Osama bin Laden. Jeff Davis, identifies the target as Haydar Kirkan. The spokesman says Kirkan oversaw the planning of attacks against Western targets outside of Syria, including in Turkey. Davis says a U.S. drone carried out the airstrike Oct. 17 in the vicinity of Idlib, in western Syria. The U.S. has previously announced that in the week after that airstrike, it hit al-Qaida targets in Yemen and Afghanistan.
The Pentagon says a U.S. airstrike in Syria this month killed what the Defense Department describes as a senior Al Qaeda leader who once had ties to Usama bin Laden. Jeff Davis, identified the target as Haydar Kirkan. The spokesman says Kirkan oversaw the planning of attacks against Western targets outside of Syria, including in Turkey. Brett McGurk, the president's special envoy in the fight against the Islamic State terror group, called Haydar a "legacy Al Qaeda terrorist and external plotter," in a tweet. Davis said a U.S. drone carried out the airstrike Oct. 17 in the vicinity of Idlib, in western Syria.
FILE- In this March 1, 2013 file photo, anti-Syrian President Bashar Assad protesters hold the Jabhat al-Nusra flag, as they shout slogans during a demonstration, at Kafranbel town, in Idlib province, northern Syria. Insurgent groups like Hezbollah and the Islamic State group in Syria have learned how to weaponize surveillance drones and use them against each other, adding a new twist to the country's civil war, a U.S. military official and others say. FILE- In this March 1, 2013 file photo, anti-Syrian President Bashar Assad protesters hold the Jabhat al-Nusra flag, as they shout slogans during a demonstration, at Kafranbel town, in Idlib province, northern Syria. Insurgent groups like Hezbollah and the Islamic State group in Syria have learned how to weaponize surveillance drones and use them against each other, adding a new twist to the country's civil war, a U.S. military official and others say.