Middle East update: June 23-24 2018

I’m going to be away for most of the next two weeks so these will be our last major updates until July 5. SYRIA Israel on Sunday launched a Patriot missile at a Syrian drone it says was about to cross into Israeli airspace. The missile missed and the drone apparently turned back on its… Continue reading Middle East update: June 23-24 2018

Middle East update: June 9-10 2018

SYRIA According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Syrian rebels launched new attacks overnight on the predominantly Shiʿa Idlib province towns of Fuʿah and Kefraya, but were driven back. Rebels have been besieging both towns for over three years. The Syrian Democratic Council, which is the political wing of the YPG-led Syrian Democratic Forces organization, says… Continue reading Middle East update: June 9-10 2018

Middle East update: June 4 2018

SYRIA US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu have reportedly reached agreement on a “roadmap” for the Kurdish-occupied Syrian town of Manbij after a meeting in Washington on Monday. It’s unclear what exactly the roadmap entails beyond a phased YPG withdrawal from Manbij–it’s hard to imagine Turkey agreeing to anything less–with… Continue reading Middle East update: June 4 2018

Middle East update: May 9 2018

SYRIA This is very much a developing story, but the Israeli military says that Iranian forces in Syria launched some 20 rockets at Israeli positions in the Golan Heights on Wednesday night. There have been no reports of casualties (the Israelis say that their Iron Dome system intercepted several of the rockets) but this does… Continue reading Middle East update: May 9 2018

Middle East update: May 1 2018

SYRIA Militant fighters in the Yarmouk area began evacuating on Tuesday under what amounts to a hostage swap negotiated between the rebels in Idlib and the Syrian government. The rebels, or more specifically Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, have begun releasing civilians they seized three years ago when they captured Idlib province in return for safe passage… Continue reading Middle East update: May 1 2018

Middle East update: April 28-29 2018

SYRIA So, um, it appears that the Syrian Democratic Forces and the Syrian army fought each other over the weekend in eastern Syria: U.S-backed Syrian Democratic Forces said they expelled had Syrian troops that briefly took control of a string of villages in oil rich areas east of the Euphrates river near the Iraqi border… Continue reading Middle East update: April 28-29 2018

Middle East update: March 13 2018

SYRIA The promised medical evacuation of Eastern Ghouta took place on Tuesday, with Jaysh al-Islam allowing the wounded, the elderly, new mothers, and others on a United Nations list of people in critical need of medical care to leave Douma. The evacuation is supposed to take place in “batches” with potentially hundreds of people being… Continue reading Middle East update: March 13 2018