Russian warplanes strike Idlib after 22-day pause: Syrian Observatory

Russian warplanes strike Idlib after 22-day pause: Syrian Observatory

U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday warned Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his allies Iran and Russian Federation not to "recklessly attack" Syria's rebel-held Idlib province, warning that hundreds of thousands of people could be killed.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad meets with Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Damascus, Syria, Sept. 3, 2018.

He added: "Hundreds of thousands of people could be killed".

The sources said the warplanes hit civilian residential areas in Jisr al-Shughur City; areas of Basanqul, Ghani, Innab, Sirmaniyah, west of Idlib; Zayzun area, north of Hama; as well as the opposition's frontlines.

With Turkey's border sealed to the north, it has also become a holding pen for some 2 million displaced civilians, among them activists, journalists and aid workers who fear arrest if they return to life under President Bashar al-Assad's government. "A rather large group of terrorists has entrenched itself there", Peskov said.

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The country, which backs several opposition groups in Syria, has set up observation points around the rebel stronghold and has been seeking to stop a full-scale state offensive.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif visited Damascus to discuss plans for an upcoming summit between the leaders of Iran, Russia and Turkey, which Tehran will host on September 7 to discuss Idlib, Iran's Fars news agency reported.

Damascus's main sponsor Russian Federation has been sounding the war drums in recent days, all the while seeking to pressure Turkey-backed groups in Idlib.

"Russia seeks to ensure not just the regime's military victory in Syria but its full political restoration through worldwide re-legitimation at war's end".

But Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman on Monday signalled strikes could be extended to Iraq if necessary. "It must be clear".

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Britain, France and the US, which together launched limited attacks on Syrian installations in mid-April in retaliation for an alleged Syrian chemical attack, say their red line against illegal weapon use remains in force.

"Frankly speaking, I don't think there's anything the United States can do about it".

TRT World's Kevin McAleese has more from Washington DC.

Trump has sought better relations with Russian Federation since taking office in 2017 but the United States has been unable to rein in Moscow's military and diplomatic support for Assad.

Trump said in April that "it's time" to bring American troops home from Syria - once the militants of the Daesh group had been definitively defeated.

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After seven years of war, the northern province of Idlib has become the rebels' final bastion.

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