Syria's Former Rebel Strongholds Endure as Assad Regime Reasserts Control

Syrian rebels agreed to give up the strategic Nassib border crossing under the terms of a truce deal

State television reported on Thursday that the Syrian military had managed to enter the militant-held part of Dara'a and hoist the flag near the city's post office.

The victory over rebels in the cradle of the uprising, and the reclaiming of the entire city for the first time in seven years, is a powerful symbol heralding the military defeat of a rebellion that aimed to unseat the Assad dynasty but was waylaid by violent government repression, the rise of Islamist extremists, the unwavering support of the regime's allies Russian Federation and Iran and the dithering of western powers.

With control over Daraa, government forces can now focus on clearing the last pockets of the opposition and, separately, the Islamic State group from the frontier at the Golan Heights, which Israel seized from Syria in a 1967 war.

Protests in Daraa in 2011 against the government's mistreatment of teenage detainees ignited a national revolt against decades of authoritarian rule.

A rebel official told Reuters negotiations were proceeding smoothly, with the Russians so far abiding by the terms of the deal, under which rebels would hand over weapons, and fighters who do not wish to live under state rule would be evacuated.

A suicide auto bombing on Tuesday killed 14 newly reconciled fighters from pro-government and rebel ranks in an attack on a south Syrian village claimed by the militant Islamic State group.

Much of the southern province of Daraa had been quiet since Friday, when a ceasefire deal between rebels and the Russian-backed regime ended a almost three-week regime assault.

Tesla's US Tax Credit Set To Come To An End
Two quarters after a company reaches 200,000 sales in the US , the incentive is cut in half to $3,750. The phaseout was triggered when Tesla delivered its 200,000th auto to a customer in the US this week.

It was the birthplace of the uprising against Bashar al-Assad.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which has been monitoring the war, said rebels were still in the city, but on Thursday their departure appeared to be merely a matter of time.

Some 2,000 rebel fighters are holed up in the opposition-held part of Daraa city, along with their families.

"After violent clashes, Jaish Khaled bin Walid took control of Heet despite Russian and regime air strikes against them", Observatory chief Rami Abdel Rahman said.

The reconciliation deal for Daraa city is the latest in a string of such agreements that have seen the regime retake large parts of the country since 2015.

Previous such deals have seen thousands of rebels bused up to areas still under opposition control in the north of the country.

Related News:

  • President Trump Sits in Winston Churchill's Chair

    President Trump Sits in Winston Churchill's Chair

    President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump arrived at Windsor Castle and meet Queen Elizabeth II Friday afternoon. But when they make you feel unwelcome, why would I stay there?' he said to The Sun .

    Ontario woman accidentally steals car from Walmart parking lot

    The woman then proceeded to drive the vehicle around for a full two weeks, using the Infiniti for her regular activities. MacRae says the owner of the Infiniti had left his key fob in the vehicle, and left the doors unlocked.
    Isaiah Thomas Will Hope To Reignite His Career With The Denver Nuggets

    Isaiah Thomas Will Hope To Reignite His Career With The Denver Nuggets

    The Cavs soon shipped him to the Lakers, where he played 17 games before getting arthroscopic surgery on his right hip in April. Thomas finished last season with the Los Angeles Lakers after his trade from the Boston Celtics to the Cleveland Cavaliers .
  • Belgium favored in third-place match over England

    Belgium favored in third-place match over England

    Southgate said: "We have a captain whose first thought all tournament has been how can he help the team to progress. They have real humility. "That will be the challenge".

    Liverpool have announced the signing of Xherdan Shaqiri from Stoke City

    At the World Cup, Shaqiri scored a 90th-minute victor to give Switzerland a 2-1 victory over Serbia in the group stage last month. Sources told ESPN FC that Shaqiri had his heart set on move to Liverpool , for whom he had been a target since 2014.
    ‘Downton Abbey’ Movie With Original Cast Finally Gets Greenlight

    ‘Downton Abbey’ Movie With Original Cast Finally Gets Greenlight

    During the course of six series, it became the most nominated non-American TV show in the history of the Emmy Awards . The movie will be produced by Carnival films and distributed by Focus Features and Universal Pictures International.
  • Kate Middleton is ROYAL MASTER who 'LEADS family behind the scene'

    Kate Middleton is ROYAL MASTER who 'LEADS family behind the scene'

    Diana's favourite flower was the white rose, leading observers to think Kate was making a subtle tribute to her. The royals were greeted at the abbey doors by the Dean and Chapter of Westminster, before taking their seats.
    Canada to head new North Atlantic Treaty Organisation  mission in Iraq

    Canada to head new North Atlantic Treaty Organisation mission in Iraq

    During his visit, Trudeau will meet with Latvian Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis and President Raimonds Vejonis. With all, Trump believes the U.S.is getting "ripped off" in an unfair marketplace.
    Loris Karius: Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp defends keeper after mistake in friendly

    Loris Karius: Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp defends keeper after mistake in friendly

    Karius gifted Real two goals in that encounter, but Klopp insisted the attention swirling around his stopper will soon fade away. The first half showed all the best bits in this one, while the second half revealed the weaknesses that need addressing.
  • Iran coordinates military presence in Syria with Russia: Iranian official

    Iran coordinates military presence in Syria with Russia: Iranian official

    An Iranian delegation led by Ali Akbar Velayati met Putin in the Russian capital on July 12, the Kremlin said. Both countries emphasized continuation of Astana talks between Iran, Russia and Turkey, he said.
    Throne Speech Opens Parliament to Take Action to Help the People

    Throne Speech Opens Parliament to Take Action to Help the People

    The new sex-ed curriculum sparked controversy, particularly among social conservatives, when the Liberal government introduced it. Already "save sex-ed" rallies are being organized in cities like Barrie and Ottawa .
    Target Field Will Suspend Sale of Papa John’s Pizza

    Target Field Will Suspend Sale of Papa John’s Pizza

    Papa John's founder John Schnatter says his use of a racial slur was taken out of context, but he feels "sick" about the incident. Not only is he featured in many TV commercials, but his face is emblazoned on pizza boxes and at the center of the logo.


Most liked

Nearly $4.7B awarded in suit linking cancer, Johnson & Johnson baby powder
Six of the women have died; nearly all of the rest, along with friends and relatives, were in the courtroom Thursday. J&J says it will appeal the latest verdict, which it argues is "the product of a fundamentally unfair process".

China Promises To Lodge Complaint Over More US Tariffs
Oil had risen the previous day, supported by a larger-than expected USA stock draw and supply concerns in Norway and Libya. High-level talks between the two countries starting in May had failed to deliver a breakthrough to head off a trade war .

Lawsuits alleging Roundup caused cancer can move forward
Wisner said Johnson read the product's label and at one point contacted the company when he started to develop a rash. Johnson, are licensed pesticide applicators, concludes that glyphosate has no association with non-Hodgkin lymphoma".

Anderson topples marathon man Isner in longest ever Wimbledon semi-final
Anderson may not be the most mobile, but he does cover the court better than Isner and his backhand is generally rock solid. After taking a medical timeout after the third set, Anderson surprisingly broke Isner's serve at 2-all in the fourth.

Trump visit to United Kingdom begins on awkward note
They gathered under a big "baby Trump" blimp , showing him snarling and holding a mobile phone, dressed in only a nappy. It comes after London Mayor Sadiq Khan repeatedly called for the president's visit to the country to be canceled.

Conte 'disgusted' over his Chelsea sacking
But The Sun say Chelsea are hopeful that, now Sarri is in charge, the trio will decide to stay at Stamford Bridge. But Willian might not be the only current Chelsea player that will be glad to see the back of Conte.

The Blockbuster from 'Last Week Tonight' just closed
He added that his team had explained to people involved with Oliver's show that the stores would probably not be open much longer. Blockbuster might be on its last legs in the USA , but a handful of Australian stores and kiosks are keeping the brand alive.

Israel to touch the moon
At this point, it will ignite its engines and reduce its speed to allow the moon's gravity to capture it. Israel could become the fourth country that sent a spaceship to the moon after USA, Russia and China .

CDC says avoid this cereal after it was linked to salmonella
The CDC warns the public not to eat any Honey Smacks cereal from any size package and with any "best if used by" date. Well, it's getting worse, and the FDA is now asking people to please, please, PLEASE stop eating the tainted cereal.

Thai 'Wild Boars' return to training after teammates' rescue
Back in London Friday morning, British divers involved in the rescue said nothing like this has ever been done before. The trapped group in Thailand have now all been rescued from the cave, and are now recuperating in hospital.

How much do we really spend?
President Donald Trump's displeasure with the U.S.'s military allies over their relatively low defense spending is no secret. Trump will meet with Prime Minister Theresa May and Queen Elizabeth II before heading to Scotland on the four-day visit.

Antoine Griezmann hits back at Thibaut Courtois criticism
France will face surprise package Croatia in the final of the World Cup , which takes place at the Luzhniki Stadium on Sunday. France forward Antoine Griezmann has hit back at Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois's criticism of his team's style of play.

Sen. Baldwin won’t back Trump’s pick for Supreme Court
Once that is done and Kavanaugh has completed a questionnaire from the Judiciary Committee, formal hearings can begin. Four states - North Dakota, South Dakota, Mississippi, and Louisiana - would automatically ban abortions .

Royal Family celebrates Royal Air Force's 100th Anniversary
She stuck out her tongue as she arrived at her Uncle Harry and Aunt Meghan's wedding. The Duchess of Cambridge accessorised with her Air Cadets Dacre brooch.

Novak Djokovic into tenth Wimbledon quarter-final, to take on Kei Nishikori
His record of 34 straight Wimbledon wins when up 2-0 was snapped in the third set, and Federer fell shortly after. In his first Wimbledon semifinal, Anderson will face 2016 runner-up Milos Raonic or ninth-seeded John Isner.