Russia discusses Syria peace settlement with opposition’s Al-Hariri

In this file photograph taken on August 20, 2018, members of Russian and Syrian forces stand guard near posters of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin at the Abu Duhur crossing on the eastern edge of Idlib province. (AFP)
Updated 30 August 2018
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Russia discusses Syria peace settlement with opposition’s Al-Hariri

MOSCOW: Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov discussed options for a peace settlement in Syria with Syrian opposition leader Nasra Al-Hariri, the ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
The foreign ministry said it stressed the need to establish dialogue between the Syrian government and the “constructive” opposition.


Daesh defeated, ‘caliphate’ eliminated: US-backed SDF

Updated 3 sec ago
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Daesh defeated, ‘caliphate’ eliminated: US-backed SDF

  • The victory marks the end of the militants’ self-declared “caliphate” that once spanned a third of Iraq and Syria
  • The SDF has been battling to capture Baghouz at the Iraqi border for weeks

BEIRUT: Daesh has been defeated at its final shred of territory of Baghouz in Syria, the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said on Saturday, announcing the end of its self-declared “caliphate” that once spanned a third of Iraq and Syria.
The SDF declared the “total elimination of (the) so-called caliphate,” Mustafa Bali, head of the SDF media office, wrote on Twitter.
“Baghouz has been liberated. The military victory against Daesh has been accomplished,” he wrote.
The SDF has been battling to capture Baghouz at the Iraqi border for weeks.
“We renew our pledge to continue the war and to pursue their remnants until their complete elimination,” he wrote.
Though the defeat of Daesh at Baghouz ends the group’s grip over the extremist quasi-state straddling Syria and Iraq that it declared in 2014, it remains a threat.
Some of its fighters still hold out in Syria’s remote central desert and in Iraqi cities they have slipped into the shadows, staging sudden shootings or kidnappings and awaiting a chance to rise again.
The US believes the group’s leader, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, is in Iraq. He stood at the pulpit of the great medieval mosque in Mosul in 2014 to declare himself caliph, sovereign over all Muslims.