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Palestinian reconciliation: Why is it likely to succeed now?

Palestinian reconciliation: Why is it likely to succeed now?

By Azzam Tamimi (Middle East Eye)- For a change, all parties concerned seem to be eager to see Palestinian reconciliation succeed. Each player has its own reasons, of course. Yet, it would not have been possible to come this far so quickly had it not been for the deepening humanitarian...

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Iraq Kurdish vote may benefit Syrian Kurds, say their leaders

Iraq Kurdish vote may benefit Syrian Kurds, say their leaders

The Iraqi Kurdish vote for independence could bolster Syria’s own Kurds if it pushes the Syrian government to negotiate over autonomy, Syrian Kurdish leaders said on Wednesday. Top Kurdish politician Ilham Ahmed told Reuters that officials from Syria’s Kurdish-led regions had...

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Kurdish referendum set to plunge Iraq into existential crisis

Kurdish referendum set to plunge Iraq into existential crisis

(Middle East Monitor)- As the Iraqi Kurdish administration continues to  defy international opinion  by pressing ahead with its plans to hold an advisory independence referendum next Monday, Iraq’s two most powerful neighbouring countries have stepped up rhetorical opposition to the...

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Why Syria hasn't retaliated to the alleged Israeli strike

Why Syria hasn't retaliated to the alleged Israeli strike

Syria didn’t retaliate to the airstrike, which it has attributed to Israel, on a missile-production plant in the west of the country on Thursday. The statement by the Syrian military was carefully crafted and low on detail. The release described the bombed facility, part of the Scientific...

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Euphrates Shield revisited

Euphrates Shield revisited

We need to first look at why and how Ankara decided to carry out Operation Euphrates Shield through its own military capabilities. In order to answer this question, we must first refer to Turkey’s threat perception at that time. Prior to Operation Euphrates Shield, the National...

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The Israelis tried to cut their losses in Syria. They failed

The Israelis tried to cut their losses in Syria. They failed

(The Middle East Eye)- As Iran consolidates its presence and influence in Syria, Israel fears that its "Syrian policy" is collapsing. To cut its losses, the Jewish state has embarked on a new and urgent diplomatic-intelligence initiative spearheaded by Mossad chief Yossi Cohen. On...

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The Battle for Raqqa: A War of Tactics and Caution

The Battle for Raqqa: A War of Tactics and Caution

By Abdullah Ghadawi ( Atlantic Council )- The base of the Islamic State’s (ISIS, ISIL, Daesh) power is in Raqqa and Mosul and is connected with each side deploying fighters across the border in mass. But while the United States and the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) took back Mosul, the...

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New U.S. plan for Syria gives Assad the upper hand

New U.S. plan for Syria gives Assad the upper hand

By Abdullah Ghadawi (Zaman Al Wasl)- The Syrian arena is witnessing today more than ever major transformations that has strategic dimensions at the political and military levels following successful truces in several regions and the activation of the plan of de-escalation zones,...

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Can the latest attempt at a ceasefire in Syria succeed?

Can the latest attempt at a ceasefire in Syria succeed?

(The Economist)- The guns have fallen silent over southern Syria. Under a deal brokered by Russia and America, the Syrian regime and its rebel adversaries, which have fought for six bloody years, have agreed to stop killing each other in parts of the country. Since the truce came into force on...

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Newest Russia threat? military challenges U.S. and Europe by winning in Syria

Newest Russia threat? military challenges U.S. and Europe by winning in Syria

(Newsweek)- Russia's support for the Syrian government in its war against jihadists and other insurgents has given Moscow a newfound military foothold in the Mediterranean, one that could present a serious challenge to another foe: NATO. The Institute for the Study of War, a...

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How Omran, the dazed Aleppo boy who reappeared this week became a political pawn

How Omran, the dazed Aleppo boy who reappeared this week became a political pawn

By Samantha Schmidt ( The Washington Post )- For a few fleeting moments, scores of people worldwide knew the face and name of the young Syrian boy in the ambulance. They saw the gut-wrenching scene in Aleppo last August captured in a photograph and video that quickly circulated on...

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Qatar and Syria’s seven priorities

Qatar and Syria’s seven priorities

(Zaman Al Wasl)- The Syrian revolution and Qatar have many intersections and Qatar preceded everyone in some of these intersections. Zaman al-Wasl presents 7 priorities for Qatar with the Syrian revolution: July 18, 2011: The Qatari Ambassador and the Qatari Diplomatic Mission...

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Syria’s bloodiest battle is yet to come — and 1 million civilians are at risk

Syria’s bloodiest battle is yet to come — and 1 million civilians are at risk

(The Washington Post )- They came from every corner of Syria: people who fled fighting but could not afford smugglers’ fees to go farther. Now nearly 1 million are packed into one province in Syria’s northwest, eyeing a weeks-old cease-fire there with trepidation, fear and mistrust....

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Trump said he would ‘take out’ the families of ISIS fighters. Did an airstrike in Syria do just that?

Trump said he would ‘take out’ the families of ISIS fighters. Did an airstrike in Syria do just that?

( The Washington Post )- Back when he was still a candidate and not president of the United States, Donald Trump had a suggestion for winning the battle against the Islamic State: “Take out their families.” “The other thing with the terrorists is you have to take out their families,...

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What Trump can learn from previous US presidents' Mideast visits

What Trump can learn from previous US presidents' Mideast visits

( The Middle East Eye )- US presidents tend to either sink or swim during forays to the Middle East. So when the current commander-in-chief, Donald Trump, boards Air Force One for his first foreign presidential venture to Saudi Arabia on Thursday, he may benefit from a recap of his...

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If London were Aleppo – 4.3 million dead or displaced

If London were Aleppo – 4.3 million dead or displaced

The bombed-out buildings of Aleppo may bear little resemblance to London’s gleaming skyscrapers but the two cities once had much in common, something German artist Hans Hack has seized on to bring home the reality of war.  Before Syria’s 6-year-old conflict, Aleppo, like London, was...

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Key opposition group on brink of collapse, last chance talk

Key opposition group on brink of collapse, last chance talk

By Abdullah Ghadawi (Zaman Al Wasl)- The atmosphere of tension has returned to the corridors of the Syrian National Coalition after the recent election battle in which Riad Saif and his supporters wan the presidency. These elections have left a situation of political...

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France: presidential candidates weight on Syria conflict

France: presidential candidates weight on Syria conflict

 By Ethar Abdulhaq (Zaman Al Wasl)- The French debate between the presidential candidates Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen was almost a debate on the Syrian issue, or so it looked like when it came to discussing the file of security and terrorism as it is the most delicate file to play...

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Egypt unearths tomb of ancient high priest      Turkey won't 'give up' on Khashoggi murder probe: minister      Israel demolishes home of alleged Palestinian assailant in West Bank      Gulf Arab bloc needs reform to give it teeth: Qatar      Israeli navy detains two Gazan fishermen: Union chief      500 displaced reach Kurdish-held areas as SDF makes gains      Nigeria reverses suspension of UNICEF operations      US' Pompeo says China should release detained Canadians