Headlines for December 26, 2019

In Syria, thousands of civilians are continuing to flee an escalation of fighting in the northwestern province of Idlib, where Syrian and Russian forces have launched an all-out offensive aimed at capturing one of Syria’s last rebel-held territories. This is Mohammad Ajaj, one of the tens of thousands of civilians who have been displaced to overcrowded refugee camps.

Mohammad Ajaj: “We came from Kafr Roma, due to shelling, to this camp. We hardly survive in this camp, as it is full of mud. People are suffering from the cold conditions. May God help us.”

In more news on Syria, a top adviser to Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad is warning of possible “operations” against U.S. soldiers stationed in eastern Syria to guard oil fields. The adviser said the United States has “no right” to the oil, and accused President Trump of trying to steal it.

In October, President Trump abruptly withdrew U.S. soldiers from parts of northern Syria, clearing the way for a Turkish offensive against Syrian Kurds, and then restationed the U.S. troops in eastern Syria, saying, “We want to keep the oil.”

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