Syria
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Lawmakers Voice Solidarity with Gaza, Mosul, Reject Extremism

A parliament session was held on Saturday in order to express Lebanon's solidarity with the Palestinian Gaza Strip and the Iraqi city of Mosul.

The session was chaired by Speaker Nabih Berri and attended by the majority of political blocs.

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Qaida Releases Video of U.S. Suicide Bomber in Syria

Syria's Al-Qaida affiliate has released a video of a young U.S. suicide bomber from Florida who blew himself up at an army post in the northwest of the country.

Moner Mohammad Abu Salha, alias Abu Hurayra al-Amriki, was believed to be the first American national to carry out such an attack in Syria's more than three-year-old war.

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U.S. Reports Progress in Destroying Syria Chemicals at Sea

An unprecedented effort to destroy Syria's most dangerous chemical agents aboard a U.S. naval ship in the Mediterranean is making progress, the Pentagon said Friday.

The American specialists on the MV Cape Ray so far have neutralized about a quarter of the chemical DF, a precursor used to make lethal Sarin gas, officials said.

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IS Jihadists Kill at Least 50 Syria Troops in Ambush

Jihadists from the Islamic State group killed at least 50 Syrian soldiers in an ambush on Friday, summarily executing most of them after their capture, a monitoring group said.

The assault in Raqa province, the jihadists' Euphrates valley stronghold, came amid their fiercest assault yet on Damascus-held territory.

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Jewish Museums in Norway Close after Terror Alert

Jewish museums in Norway remained closed to the public on Friday, the day after Norway stepped up security as it announced a possible imminent terrorist attack by jihadists coming from Syria.

The Jewish community seems like a probable target for Islamist militants who have fought in the war-torn country, as underscored by the deadly attack on Brussels' Jewish Museum in May.

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Boat Protest in Greece against Syria Chemicals Operation

Campaigners on the Greek island of Crete launched a seaborne protest on Friday against the destruction of Syrian chemical agents in the Mediterranean, the state-run ANA agency reported.

Some 36 people including local mayors, labor unionists and a leftist MP sailed from the port of Hania aboard three sailboats.

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Syria Becoming Home to Two Competing Islamic States

A new power struggle has emerged within the Syrian rebellion after Al-Qaida announced it aims to create an Islamic "emirate" to compete with rival jihadist group, the Islamic State (IS).

As with IS in its early days, when it was still known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, Al-Qaida affiliate the Al-Nusra Front is spreading its zone of influence, taking over strategically located villages, and competing with other rebel groups.

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Jihadist Assault on Syria Regime Territory Kills 74

An offensive by the jihadist Islamic State group against Syrian government-held territory has killed at least 74 people in the past 24 hours, a monitoring group said on Friday.

Buoyed by their capture of swathes of western and north-central Iraq last month launched multiple attacks on army positions across northern and northeastern Syria on Thursday.

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Jordan Downs Drone near Syria Border

Jordan shot down a drone on Friday as it flew over the northeastern region of Mafraq, near the border with Syria, a security official said.

In the first such incident since the conflict erupted in neighboring Syria in 2011, "the Jordanian armed forces shot down an unidentified drone with a missile as it flew over Mafraq," the official told AFP.

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Ban Accuses Syrian Forces of Stepping Up Attacks on Hospitals

Syrian government forces have stepped up attacks on hospitals and clinics, U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon said Thursday, accusing all sides of blocking aid deliveries as a "tactic of war."

Ban told the U.N. Security Council in a report that both government forces and rebel fighters were increasingly targeting vital services such as water stations and electric cables, compounding the humanitarian crisis.

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