David Enders

Already unable to cope with refugees, Syria’s neighbors brace for more

Aarsal’s city hall now stays open seven days a week to accommodate the refugees camped in the building’s courtyard, waiting to be told where they might find shelter. | 04/30/13 17:59:25 By - By David Enders and Nabih Bulos

Syrian troops recapture villages near strategic city of Qusayr

A Syrian government offensive near the Lebanese border is being described as the fiercest fighting in months by villagers fleeing the violence, with troops loyal to President Bashar Assad seizing control of villages that had been rebel strongholds. | 04/29/13 18:30:41 By - By David Enders

U.S., Israel spar over whether Syrian government has used chemical weapons

Israel’s top military intelligence analyst said Tuesday that the Syrian regime used lethal chemical weapons last month against opposition forces and criticized the international community for failing to act on evidence that “red lines” had been crossed in Syria. | 04/23/13 18:42:57 By - By Sheera Frenkel, David Enders and Hannah Allam

Syrian opposition leader Moaz al Khatib calls on Nusra to renounce al Qaida

The leader of the primary U.S.-backed Syrian opposition group, who criticized the United States last year for designating the rebel Nusra Front a terrorist organization linked to al Qaida, now is urging Nusra’s fighters to break ties with al Qaida. | 04/18/13 18:23:29 By - By David Enders McClatchy Newspapers

Nusra Front members in Syria have never masked al Qaida ties

I was recently abducted by a group of rebels in northern Syria. I was strip-searched and held, handcuffed and blindfolded, for six hours along with three Syrian men before we were let go. Our captors suspected me – an American journalist – of being a spy. | 04/10/13 15:23:16 By - By David Enders

Despite U.S. concerns, little prevents Islamists from joining Syria fight

For all the Obama administration’s vocal concern about Islamist extremists fighting in Syria, neither U.S. officials nor regional allies have taken significant action to stem the flow of jihadists to rebel ranks. | 04/08/13 16:52:36 By - By Hannah Allam and David Enders

In rebel-held Syria, some schools try to carry on

It’s unlikely the students and teachers at Taha Hussein High School will soon forget last year’s summer break. | 04/03/13 16:03:15 By - By David Enders

March was deadliest month of Syrian war, as rebel deaths surged

March was the deadliest month so far in Syria’s two-year-old civil war, as rebels pressed their offensive throughout the country, seizing a provincial capital for the first time and launching attacks on other fronts. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, 5,896 civilians and combatants died last month, surpassing the 5,400 deaths the observatory recorded in August, the previous high-water mark. The observatory recorded 3,893 deaths in February. | 04/01/13 16:29:59 By - By David Enders

As Syria’s war rages, villagers who’d fled to cities for better lives return

Until a few months ago, the village of Dweetchia was all but empty, one of hundreds of once-populated specks in northern and eastern Syria that had been abandoned over the last decade because of drought, environmental mismanagement and poverty, a modern exodus that led perhaps as many as a million Syrians to search for better lives elsewhere. The conditions that drove people from the villages haven’t changed, but Dweetchia is once again full of people. Many of its former residents have returned, joined by refugees seeking safety from the fighting that’s ravaged much of the country. | 04/01/13 00:00:00 By - By David Enders

Islamists, secular rebels battle in Syria over Nusra Front’s call for Islamic state

Two Syrian rebel groups – one seeking an elected civil government, the other favoring the establishment of a religious state – are battling each other in the city of Tal Abyad, on the border with Turkey, in a sign of the tensions that are likely to rule this country if the government of President Bashar Assad falls. | 03/26/13 15:32:24 By - By David Enders

In Raqqa, largest city held by Syrian rebels, Islamists provide electricity, bread, and order

The sounds of battle can still be heard nearby and residents remain fearful that the government will attack with airstrikes and missiles. But Abdul Hakim Mohamed, the vice president of the local civil council in the largest Syrian city so far to fall to rebel control is optimistic about the future, though what that future will be is uncertain. | 03/24/13 13:06:59 By - By David Enders

Syrian opposition names U.S. citizen Ghassan Hitto to prime minister post

After two days of meetings that lasted into the wee hours of Tuesday, Syrian opposition leaders elected a prime minister to lead their interim opposition government. But questions remained about the prime minister’s responsibilities and whether a government in exile would have any real influence inside Syria. | 03/19/13 15:09:59 By - By David Enders

Islamist rebels consolidating hold in three northeast Syrian provinces

Rebels from Syria’s Islamist factions now control large parts of three contiguous provinces in north and eastern Syria, and they are working to install civil administrations there in line with their ambitions of establishing an Islamic state after the fall of President Bashar Assad. | 03/15/13 17:51:00 By - By David Enders

Rebel cooperation in Syrian town shows challenge of isolating Islamists

Sophisticated new weapons now in the hands of rebels in north-central Syria underscore how difficult it will be, once more lethal aid begins to arrive, to keep those weapons from Islamist extremists who’ve become key to rebel military advances throughout the country. | 03/03/13 13:55:24 By - By David Enders

Once a curiosity, captured tanks are a growing part of Syrian rebels’ arsenal

Ankir Ankir normally drives a wheat harvester, but a battle in December found him piloting a tank, a skill he had learned 17 years ago as an 18-year-old conscript in the Syrian army. | 02/27/13 16:49:51 By - By David Enders

Syrian opposition leader Mouaz Khatib agrees to attend Rome meeting

After initially threatening a boycott, Syria’s opposition agreed Monday to attend a meeting on Thursday in Rome of the so-called Friends of Syria group of nations that support the rebellion against Syrian President Bashar Assad. But the agreement came only after Secretary of State John Kerry personally called opposition leader Mouaz Khatib and urged him to come. | 02/26/13 06:38:36 By - By David Enders

Pro-Assad militia now key to Syrian government’s war strategy

A Syrian government militia that the U.S. has declared a terrorist organization is becoming increasingly important to the Syrian government’s strategy as it attempts to shore up its still-loyal but beleaguered military. | 02/19/13 18:10:13 By - By David Enders

Few expect results from Syrian opposition’s offer to negotiate indirectly with Assad

Despite offers by the leader of an umbrella group for Syria’s opposition to negotiate with the Syrian government, such talks are unlikely in the short term for a number of reasons, including two of the opposition’s key demands. | 02/05/13 15:02:34 By - By David Enders

January death toll in Syria rises as talks remain stalled

Syrian human rights activists recorded a slight increase in deaths in January compared with December, but still fewer than what so far has been the peak of the violence in the country last summer. | 02/01/13 18:17:12 By - By David Enders

U.S. effort to undercut Islamist rebels in Syria appears to have failed

A U.S.-supported push to form military councils across Syria to unite the hundreds of groups fighting to topple President Bashar Assad and coordinate the provision of aid to secular rebel groups appears largely to have failed. | 01/28/13 16:43:16 By - By David Enders

Syrian Palestinians fear three-way fight for control of refugee camps

Syria’s Palestinians have been trapped by the conflict in that country, much the way Palestinian refugee populations found themselves trapped between factions in the civil wars in Iraq and Lebanon. | 01/23/13 13:26:38 By - By David Enders

Human Rights Watch, U.S. reject report that Syria used chemical weapons

Employees of the advocacy group Human Rights Watch expressed skepticism Wednesday over a report that a State Department cable had concluded that the Syrian government used chemical weapons last month against rebel-held neighborhoods in the city of Homs. | 01/16/13 18:00:47 By - By David Enders

Seeking safety from rape, Syrian girls reportedly are marrying earlier than before war

Standing outside the refugee tent that has become her home, Qut al Qukub al Subayhi looked like a happy bride, posing with her new husband. She laughed when asked where the young couple had spent their honeymoon. “Here,” she said, pointing to the tent. | 01/15/13 15:14:21 By - By David Enders

Lebanon’s Hezbollah steps in to help Syrians fleeing violence at home

Despite its unflinching support for the Syrian government during the last two years, the militant Shiite Muslim group Hezbollah has been quietly aiding Syrians living in Lebanon – including those who don’t support its political positions. | 01/14/13 15:43:17 By - By David Enders

For Syrians escaping war, a muddy Lebanese potato field will have to do for refuge

The winter rain was pouring down one day this week and it was bitterly cold in the muddy field, but that didn’t stop work for the man who called himself Abu Jassim. | 01/11/13 17:46:33 By - By David Enders

Al Qaida-linked Nusra rebels about to overrun Syrian air base

A Syrian rebel group that the United States has labeled an affiliate of al Qaida in Iraq appeared Thursday to be on the verge of overrunning a government air base that’s used to launch helicopter strikes against rebel-held areas in Syria’s north. | 01/10/13 18:43:40 By - By David Enders

Prisoner swap by Syrian government, rebels frees 48 Iranians

Rebels fighting to topple the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad on Wednesday freed 48 Iranian hostages whom they’d been holding for five months in return for the government’s release of more than 2,000 mostly Syrian prisoners. It was the largest prisoner exchange to date of the country’s civil war. | 01/09/13 16:03:57 By - By David Enders

Key source for Syrian death toll questions accuracy of recent UN-sponsored report

A new United Nations-sponsored report that estimates more than 60,000 people have died in Syria’s political violence has touched off a new dispute that underscores how little is truly known about the toll from a civil war just weeks from beginning its third year. | 01/04/13 17:48:58 By - By David Enders

Nusra Front reportedly leading Syrian rebels’ fight for key Damascus area

An Islamist rebel group that the United States has listed as a terrorist organization has taken the lead in fighting in Damascus, according to residents who’ve recently fled the violence there. | 01/03/13 15:59:36 By - By David Enders

Syrian rebels say Americans, Britons helped train them in Jordan

Weeks before the Obama administration and other Western nations recognized a new Syrian opposition coalition as “the legitimate representative” of the Syrian people, Syrian rebels were receiving training in the use of light and heavy weapons with the backing of the Jordanian, British and U.S. governments, participants in the training have told McClatchy. | 12/14/12 18:10:45 By - By David Enders

Head of new U.S.-backed Syrian coalition endorses al Qaida-linked rebel faction

Right after the United States formalized its backing of a new Syrian opposition group Wednesday, the mutual unease underpinning the partnership surfaced as the group’s leader openly criticized the United States for declaring the rebel movement’s Nusra Front a terrorist group linked to al Qaida in Iraq. | 12/12/12 19:32:52 By - By David Enders and Hannah Allam

After 6 months, rebels gaining ground at Damascus; Islamists lead fighting

A new rebel offensive around the Syrian capital has demonstrated the insurgents’ strengths after six months of combat in the Damascus region. But from afar it’s hard to gauge how close the rebels are to penetrating the central city or to capturing and holding new ground. | 12/10/12 15:21:12 By - By David Enders

For one Syrian activist, second thoughts on the armed rebellion

Hasaka is still controlled by the Syrian government, but even from the window of a taxi it’s obvious the people here have not been spared from the country’s civil war. | 12/03/12 15:14:11 By - By David Enders

Al Qaida-linked group Syria rebels once denied now key to anti-Assad victories

When the group Jabhat al Nusra first claimed responsibility for car and suicide bombings in Damascus that killed dozens last January, many of Syria’s revolutionaries claimed that the organization was a creation of the Syrian government, designed to discredit those who opposed the regime of President Bashar Assad and to hide the regime’s own brutal tactics. | 12/02/12 16:32:30 By - By David Enders

In Syrian towns rebels control, demonstrators sometimes target them

Wael Nasrallah has organized more than 100 demonstrations in the past 20 months. On Friday, he led another one in Qalat al Mudiq, a city of about 30,000 in central Syria. | 11/30/12 16:11:29 By - By David Enders

Syrian rebels’ arsenal now includes heavy weapons

Rebels who have laid siege to a Syrian army base near Mayadeen in southeastern Syria have made mortar attacks a regular part of their routine. | 11/29/12 15:46:05 By - By David Enders

Kurds say they’ll stop Islamist rebels from moving along Syria’s border with Turkey

A tense truce between Syrian rebels and a Kurdish militia held Tuesday in the city of Ras al Ayn, fast against the border with Turkey. But neither side hid its disdain for the other, and both continued to hold prisoners in a standoff that suggests rebel hopes to push their control further east faces an all but certain challenge. | 11/27/12 19:07:35 By - By David Enders

Rebels flying black Islamist flag seize artillery base in Syria’s Deir al Zour province

After a siege that lasted nearly a month, Syrian government soldiers abandoned an artillery base in the town of Mayadin Thursday morning, handing anti-government rebels in southeastern Deir al Zour province a key victory that will allow them to move next to the airport near the provincial capital, one of the last positions the Syrian military controls in the province. | 11/22/12 16:50:58 By - By David Enders

With Syria’s eastern oilfields in rebel hands, a brisk business in pirated crude grows

Syrian rebels have captured two of the three major oilfields in the country’s southeastern Deir al Zour province and are extracting oil that they say is helping to support their rebellion. | 11/21/12 15:10:04 By - By David Enders

Rebels in Syria waiting to see if new opposition umbrella group can deliver international aid

Rebels inside Syria have adopted a wait-and-see attitude toward a new organization created to lead the opposition to Syrian President Bashar Assad, with the decision to embrace it largely contingent on whether the group delivers significant international aid for the rebellion. | 11/16/12 15:44:49 By - By David Enders

Rebels capture Ras al Ayn, 1st town to fall in Syria’s Kurdish region

Rebels who are fighting the Syrian government took control of a fourth border crossing with Turkey after killing or capturing the remaining government soldiers in the city of Ras al Ayn on Wednesday evening. | 11/15/12 16:53:01 By - By David Enders

Kurds in disputed town on Turkish border ask Syrian rebels to withdraw

The two major Syrian Kurdish political factions have put aside their differences and called for rebels to leave the city of Ras al Ayn, where they’ve been battling troops loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad for the past week. | 11/14/12 18:07:13 By - By David Enders

Thousands flee to Turkey as Syrian rebels, military battle for 5th day in Ras al Ayn

More than 100,000 Syrians are housed in refugee camps in Turkey, and thousands more have fled there without officially registering with the Turkish government. Turks also have opened their homes to the refugees. | 11/12/12 19:08:55 By - By David Enders

Female Kurdish militia leader widely reported as killed by Syrian rebels turns up alive

A female Syrian militia leader widely reported 10 days ago as killed by anti-government rebels has turned up alive and apparently well, according to a video posted on the Internet Sunday. | 11/11/12 16:37:30 By - By David Enders

Battle for Maaret al Numan reveals Syrian rebels’ weak spots

Hobbled by a lack of supplies and a confused chain of command, rebels here said they feared they might lose the strategic city without reinforcements and ammunition. That’s a reversal from a month ago, when at least five groups of fighters coordinated to attack Maaret al Numan from three sides and clear it of army and security forces. | 11/07/12 17:06:06 By - By David Enders

Deaths in Syria down from peak; army casualties outpacing rebels’

The death toll among rebels and civilians in Syria dropped 16 percent in October compared with August, the deadliest month of the conflict to date, though the number is still more than three times higher than it was in the last month of a U.N.-brokered cease-fire earlier this year, according to statistics that a Syrian human rights group compiled. | 11/06/12 16:34:43 By - By David Enders

Syrian workers now drawing hostility from Lebanese hosts

Syrians have long come to Lebanon in search of better job opportunities, but the sudden increase in their numbers as they flee the war in their homeland has exacerbated tensions with their Lebanese hosts. | 11/05/12 17:51:04 By - By David Enders

Neither side honors Syria cease-fire on last day

Fighting appeared to have returned to its former pace Monday on the final day of Syria’s four-day holiday cease-fire, underscoring the difficulties of finding a negotiated end to the country’s civil war. | 10/29/12 15:16:39 By - By David Enders

Holiday cease-fire imperfect, but slows Syria violence

A United Nations cease-fire that went into effect Friday morning in Syria was breached almost immediately, but people across the country reported less violence than usual. | 10/26/12 14:43:31 By - By David Enders

Syria-like violence seen as unlikely in a Lebanon that’s stable in its instability

Lebanon’s politics are inextricably linked to Syria’s. Syria and Lebanon were one country until Lebanon gained independence in 1943, and Syria occupied Lebanon militarily from 1976 until 2005. | 10/26/12 13:36:38 By - By David Enders

Syrian military, some rebels accept 4-day U.N. cease-fire

The Syrian military announced Thursday that it would abide by a United Nations-sponsored cease-fire during the four-day Eid al Adha holiday, the first such agreement since April. | 10/25/12 17:44:59 By - By David Enders

Syrian army pushing rebels out of Damascus, activists say

Anti-government activists in Damascus say rebels have lost ground there after a concerted offensive by the Syrian government. | 10/01/12 17:45:18 By - By David Enders

Syria’s rebel groups united only by opposition to Bashar Assad

By one count, there are more than 600 rebel battalions, large and small, though fewer than 10 stand out as having significant organizational capability across large swaths of Syrian territory. The cost of weapons and ammunition remains a major obstacle. | 09/24/12 00:00:00 By - By David Enders

Despite focus on cities, Syria’s civil war grinds on in countryside

On what should have been the first day of school, children in the Syrian town of Khaweija helped pick through the remains of a shop, looking for anything salvageable. | 09/18/12 17:34:37 By - By David Enders

In Syria’s largest city, rebellion takes on an overtly religious tone

The battle for Aleppo that began with a rebel offensive in mid-July has settled into a stalemate. The rebels here control largely the same neighborhoods they took in the initial offensive. But there is something different here – a distinctly religious tone not heard elsewhere in more than seven months covering Syria’s rebellion. | 09/16/12 13:24:09 By - By David Enders

Syria’s rebels counting on captured anti-aircraft guns to defeat air force

Ten days ago, rebels fighting to topple the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad launched a two-day offensive against the air base at Abu al Dahour, overrunning a complex that housed air force officers. The government responded by bombing parts of the city to rubble, but the rebels say they plan to keep up their efforts to obstruct the air force. | 09/11/12 13:10:31 By - By David Enders

Analysts: Syrian army in no danger of collapsing from rebel assaults

Though degraded by a war of attrition against increasingly capable guerrilla militias, the Syrian military remains a cohesive force capable of continuing its operations for the foreseeable future, according to independent military analysts. | 09/07/12 13:17:00 By - By David Enders

Death toll soars in Syria since U.N. monitors stopped their work

The number of people killed in violence in Syria has skyrocketed since U.N. efforts to broker a peace agreement fell apart in June, with the total number of dead, including both government loyalists and opponents, now likely surpassing 30,000 since demonstrations against President Bashar Assad began nearly 18 months ago, according to recently available statistics. | 09/04/12 16:46:10 By - By David Enders

Syria’s Assad, in rare TV interview, says his army is winning civil war

Syrian President Bashar Assad, speaking publicly for the first time since a bomb in Damascus killed four of his top military advisers, said Wednesday that his forces are winning Syria’s civil war and that foreign governments are engaged in a conspiracy to destroy Syria. | 08/29/12 19:30:38 By - By David Enders

Surge of Syrian refugees prompts Turkey to impose new limits

Turkish government officials, alarmed by a surge in refugees from Syria, have told Syrian activists in Reyhanli and other cities in southern Turkey that their movement and activities will be restricted, an apparent change in policy toward the thousands of Syrians who’ve sought refuge here. | 08/28/12 18:46:52 By - By David Enders

Syrian rebels accuse army of atrocities in Damascus suburb where 371 died

A week-long government siege of a rebel-occupied Damascus suburb has killed at least 371 people, including 122 whose bodies were reportedly found in a mosque, anti-government activists said Sunday. | 08/26/12 17:39:48 By - By David Enders

Syrian army hitting anti-Assad rebels hard in furious offensive

The bombing last month that killed four top Syrian government figures and was followed by rebel offensives in Damascus and Aleppo that many hailed as a turning point in the battle to topple the government now looks more like a harbinger of worsening violence, not the beginning of the end. | 08/24/12 18:54:54 By - By David Enders

When Assad falls, Kurds in Syria say they’ll take back lands given to Arabs

With Syria convulsed by a civil war that shows no signs of ending soon, the country’s Kurdish region, fast against Turkey and Iraq, is surprisingly peaceful. But the history of relations between Syria’s Kurdish and Arab ethnic groups suggests that peace may be short-lived. | 08/23/12 17:46:15 By - By David Enders

Despite orders to turn back refugees, thousands of Syrians are flooding into Iraq

The 20 refugees who’d walked across the border from Syria refused to go back. | 08/20/12 19:32:46 By - By David Enders

With UN’s exit, Syria becomes more difficult to solve

The United Nations’ decision to end its monitoring mission in Syria on Sunday robs the international community of an important window into the war-torn country and leaves the diplomatic road ahead uncertain. | 08/17/12 18:47:14 By - By David Enders and Hannah Allam

Competing senses of liberation, dread rule in Kurdish areas of Syria

The only place in the predominantly Kurdish city of Ammouda that’s still flying the Syrian flag is the police station, but people here say it means little. | 08/15/12 15:36:21 By - By David Enders

As war widens, Palestinians in Syria are caught in the middle

Like many of the approximately half a million Palestinians who live in Syria, Abu Abed tried to avoid taking sides when the uprising against the Syrian government began last year. | 08/10/12 17:48:36 By - By David Enders

Kofi Annan quits peace mission; more Syrian bloodshed ahead

The resignation Thursday of veteran diplomat Kofi Annan and the collapse of diplomatic efforts on Syria by the United Nations and the Arab League all but assure a bloody finish to the uprising against President Bashar Assad. | 08/02/12 18:29:22 By - By Hannah Allam and David Enders

Syria government reportedly showing more restraint in Aleppo fighting

The government of Syrian President Bashar Assad appears to be taking a relatively restrained approach to the rebel presence in Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, where fighting was reported to be continuing Tuesday, even as Syrian government media claimed to have pushed the rebels out of a key neighborhood. | 07/31/12 19:18:08 By - By David Enders

Syria’s Aleppo reported tense, awaiting battle; journalists freed from extremists

Syrian aid workers said Friday that they have suspended their work inside Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, in anticipation of a bruising battle between rebels and forces loyal to President Bashar Assad in what would certainly be a climactic moment, if not the climax, in an increasingly complicated civil war. | 07/27/12 20:00:53 By - By David Enders

Fighting in Syria indicates Bashar Assad’s end isn’t imminent

Despite reports last week that suggested rebel forces were on the verge of major triumphs in Syria, the last few days of fighting there show that a long battle still looms. | 07/23/12 18:03:58 By - By David Enders

Bombing that killed Syrian officials signals new push to topple Assad, rebels say

A bomb targeting Syria’s military leadership killed the country’s defense minister Wednesday and at least two other high-ranking officials, sparking questions about how long the besieged government of President Bashar Assad can remain in power and highlighting the differences between the United States and Russia over what steps should be taken to curb the violence that’s sweeping Syria. | 07/18/12 19:46:27 By - By Austin Tice and David Enders

Israel sees Bashar Assad’s fall as certain, worries about al Qaida in Syria

The head of Israeli military intelligence told his country’s parliament on Tuesday that Syrian President Bashar Assad won’t be able to defeat the armed uprising that’s spread throughout Syria and that the conflict there has allowed what he called “radical Islam” to gain ground on Israel’s northern border. | 07/17/12 19:02:49 By - By Sheera Frenkel and David Enders

June was bloodiest month of Syrian uprising, with 3,000 killed

Violence in Syria reportedly killed nearly 3,000 people in June, making it the bloodiest month since rebels took up arms against the country’s government more than a year ago. The statistics also appeared to bear out the argument that the violence is moving closer to the Syrian capital, Damascus. | 07/05/12 18:13:25 By - By David Enders

Weeks spent with Syrian rebels reveal a force of Sunni Muslim civilians

They are doctors, they are teachers. They are students and the unemployed. They are farmers and pharmacists. | 06/25/12 15:51:43 By - By David Enders

Syrian rebels pushing back into Baba Amr in Homs, scene of heavy shelling

Rebels fighting the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad have launched an offensive to recapture the Baba Amr neighborhood in the city of Homs, an area they lost to government forces in February after a 26-day siege that trapped civilians, left hundreds dead and destroyed scores of buildings. | 06/20/12 20:11:54 By - By David Enders

Syria’s refugee population swells with fighting between army, rebels

With fighting intensifying between the Syrian military and armed rebels seeking to topple President Bashar Assad, the number of people who’ve fled their homes for shelter elsewhere has skyrocketed, leaving humanitarian aid agencies and residents scrambling to provide food and water to an ever-growing population of the displaced that likely numbers more than a half million. | 06/20/12 17:52:18 By - By David Enders

Syrian rebels now using EFPs in bombs, bane of U.S. in Iraq

Though they still lack the kind of heavy weaponry that might help them decisively drive back the military, rebels in central Syria are constructing bigger and more effective bombs, and a steady flow of money from the militants’ leadership in Turkey has allowed them to purchase sufficient amounts of small arms. | 06/13/12 16:57:24 By - By David Enders

Since Qubeir killings, Syrians fear rising violence between Sunnis, Alawites

The massacre at Qubeir underscores a widening sectarian conflict that pits Sunni Muslims against Alawite Muslims in a split that’s eerily similar to the Sunni-Shiite bloodshed that wracked neighboring Iraq. | 06/12/12 17:19:35 By - By David Enders

Survivor says slaughtered Syrian village had been warned not to shelter anti-Assad activists

A massacre that took as many as 80 lives in Qubeir may have had its origins in a warning that government sympathizers issued to the village’s residents against harboring known anti-government activists. | 06/08/12 18:30:01 By - By David Enders

In northern Syria, rebels now control many towns and villages

Amid a torrent of news coverage focused on massacres and sanctions, a major change in the Syrian political landscape has gone largely unremarked: All across northern and central Syria, in an area known as the Al Ghab Plain, a growing number of villages and towns effectively are outside government control. | 06/07/12 16:22:02 By - By David Enders

After 5 days of fighting, Syrian town devastated, no one claims victory

Five days of fighting over Kafer Zaita in northern Syria came to an ignominious end Wednesday, with the town devastated and empty of people but controlled by neither the government nor the rebels. | 06/06/12 18:51:41 By - By Austin Tice and David Enders

Syrian military casualties rose in May while death toll overall dropped

Despite the international outcry over recent massacres allegedly committed by backers of President Bashar Assad, statistics compiled by human rights activists show that violence in Syria has dropped since a United Nations peace plan went into effect in April and is down sharply from its peak in March. | 06/01/12 19:01:23 By - By David Enders

U.N.'s Kofi Annan meets with Syria's Bashar Assad as rebels say cease-fire plan has yielded nothing

United Nations special envoy Kofi Annan met Tuesday with Syrian President Bashar Asssad to express dismay over the killing last week of 108 people in the Syrian town of Houla, as evidence mounts that Syria's warring factions have hardened their positions a month and a half after a U.N.-backed cease-fire went into effect. | 05/29/12 17:40:50 By - By David Enders

Twin car bombs devastate key Syrian intelligence agency in Damascus

A pair of bombings Thursday outside one of the most feared branches of the Syrian intelligence services killed more than 55 people, the Syrian government said. It was the deadliest act of violence in the country’s nearly 14 months of political upheaval. | 05/10/12 17:09:00 By - By David Enders

Syrian troops say cease-fire hasn’t stopped rebel attacks

With a United Nations-sponsored peace plan nearly one month old, Syrian soldiers in the country’s north say rebel forces trying to oust Syrian President Bashar Assad are continuing to launch attacks on their positions daily in apparent violation of a cease-fire and are strong enough that government troops cannot enter several towns and villages near this city. | 05/09/12 16:52:35 By - By David Enders

Syrian views vary over value of parliamentary elections

Nearly 15 million Syrians were eligible to vote in Monday’s parliamentary vote, according to the government, though it seemed likely that only a fraction of those would actually cast ballots. | 05/07/12 17:00:25 By - By David Enders

Parliamentary vote in Syria can’t cover up country’s violent divisions

Nationwide parliamentary elections are scheduled for Monday in Syria, but in this city not far from the border with Lebanon, the only posters on the walls bear the faces of the dead. | 05/06/12 18:16:11 By - By David Enders

Head of U.N. force in Syria says monitors’ presence has cut government violence

The United Nations general leading the mission to monitor a U.N.-brokered cease-fire in Syria said Thursday that he believed the mission was beginning to have an effect. | 05/03/12 19:11:26 By - By David Enders

Rare inside view of Syria’s rebels finds a force vowing to fight on

The story of the Katiba Farouq, or the Farouq Brigade, has been eclipsed over the past year by news coverage that’s remained focused on the Syrian government’s shelling of urban neighborhoods. But in the months since they took up arms last August, Farouq fighters have discovered the Syrian military’s weaknesses, and despite some reversals, still appear capable of inflicting heavy casualties whenever the Syrian army attempts to enter rebel-held areas. | 04/23/12 00:07:51 By - By David Enders

Syria’s Farouq rebels battle to hold onto Qusayr, last outpost near Lebanese border

As representatives of the more than 70 countries dubbed Friends of Syria met in Paris Thursday to discuss aid to the country’s opposition, some of the rebel fighters in Qusayr wondered if it might already be too late. The fighters had fled Homs in late February. Now they worry they won’t be able to withstand Syrian army forays into Qusayr, a city that once held 35,000 people but is now largely abandoned. | 04/19/12 05:00:00 By - By David Enders

Syrian rebels, but not residents, have returned to contested area

When the Syrian government stepped up its offensive against rebels before a cease-fire took effect a week ago, the towns between Homs and the Lebanese border were hit especially hard. Thousands fled as the army pushed to cut rebels’ supply lines. Now, as the cease-fire sputters, the rebels have returned, but not many civilians or any semblance of normal life. | 04/18/12 00:00:00 By - By David Enders

Syrian army, rebels trade blows at Qusayr in cease-fire breach

Rebels at the city of Qusayr fought the military in a breach of a U.N.-sponsored cease-fire that was rare primarily because an independent journalist witnessed it. | 04/18/12 00:00:00 By - By David Enders

Cease-fire survives as Syrians protest without major bloodshed

Thousands of people held street rallies across Syria on Friday to protest the government of President Bashar Assad, the first test of a U.N.-brokered ceasefire that went into effect Thursday. By most accounts, the cease-fire held. | 04/13/12 17:41:00 By - David Enders

Now the debate begins: Is UN's Syria cease-fire working or not?

Syrian government forces appeared Thursday largely to have ended their attacks on anti-government strongholds, adhering to a United Nations-brokered cease-fire. | 04/12/12 17:06:00 By - David Enders

Accusations of massacres and continued fighting as Syria deadline looms

Syrian security forces on Wednesday undertook fewer military operations involving armor and heavy artillery ahead of Thursday's cease-fire deadline but conducted raids and arrests in the country's northern and central regions that left at least five people dead. | 04/11/12 15:53:00 By - David Enders

Violence drops in Syria, but cease-fire success far from certain

A U.N.-sponsored plan to end the violence in Syria got off to a rocky start Tuesday, with Syria's foreign minister claiming that soldiers had begun to pull out of urban areas while anti-government activists charged that military operations were continuing throughout the country. | 04/10/12 18:00:00 By - David Enders

Fighting reported in half of Syria's provinces as ceasefire deadline nears

Syrian soldiers battled anti-government rebels in half of the country's 14 provinces on Monday, three days before a United Nations-backed ceasefire is to take effect, anti-government activists said. More than 100 people were killed across the country Monday, according to the activists. | 04/09/12 17:22:00 By - David Enders

Has Syria really agreed to U.N. cease-fire?

Contradicting reports from the United Nations last week that Syria's government had agreed to a cease fire that would have gone into effect on Thursday, the Syrian government said Sunday it would not withdraw troops from restive areas unless it received "written agreements" from armed rebels dedicated to the ouster of Syrian president Bashar al Assad. | 04/08/12 13:31:00 By - David Enders

With peace deadline nearing, Syria sends helicopters against rebels

The Syrian military stepped up its campaign against anti-government rebels Thursday as a deadline for the government to implement a U.N.-sponsored peace plan approached, while the country's fractured opposition took a step toward unity with representatives of Syria's Kurdish minority. | 04/05/12 16:28:00 By - David Enders

Assad tightens grip on Syrian borders, cutting rebel supply routes

Syria has tightened control of its borders with Lebanon and Turkey in recent days, laying fresh fields of land mines and sweeping through areas critical to rebel smuggling operations in a development that raises questions about how aid, lethal or non-lethal, would reach the armed opponents of President Bashar Assad. | 04/01/12 16:28:00 By - David Enders

One face of the Syrian revolt: a jihadi comes home

Abu Khalid, 28, was born and reared in Daraa, the Syrian city where the revolt against President Bashar Assad began last year. For months from Jordan, he's been providing weapons and other supplies to his comrades across the border. This is his story. | 03/31/12 13:40:00 By - David Enders

Assad forces still battling Syrian rebels for control of Homs

The Syrian government, unable to quell an armed rebellion despite overwhelming firepower, issued new travel restrictions Monday for military-aged males as fighting continued across the country, especially in Homs, Syria's third largest city. | 03/26/12 17:22:00 By - David Enders

A new generation of Syrians adapt to life in exile

Rima Flihan is just one of the tens of thousands who have fled Syria to Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Iraq since demonstrations against Syrian President Bashar Assad began a little more than a year ago. The peaceful demonstrations now have been supplanted by an armed insurgency; | 03/23/12 15:52:00 By - David Enders

Experts: Sanctions squeeze Syrians, but are unlikely to change Assad's behavior

Syrians are losing their jobs as the country's economy increasingly feels the effects of civil strife and sanctions, but experts and Syrian citizens alike say the sanctions are unlikely to be felt in any real way by Syrian President Bashar Assad and his regime any time soon. | 03/19/12 14:57:00 By - David Enders

Twin blasts kill 27 in Syria's capital, Damascus

After weeks of punishing defeats in rebellious Syrian cities, anti-government insurgents struck at the heart of President Bashar Assad's regime Saturday with twin bombings in the capital that killed 27 and wounded more than 100. | 03/17/12 16:45:00 By - David Enders and Hannah Allam

One year in, will Syria become a guerrilla war?

With Syrian forces tightening their grip in and around Deraa, the city close to this Jordanian border town where the revolt against President Bashar Assad began a year ago, the uprising may be entering a new phase of grinding guerrilla warfare. | 03/15/12 19:03:00 By - David Enders and Jonathan S. Landay

Ex-Chalabi aide launches Arabic news channel, taking aim at Gulf perspective

In a media environment where television channels are frequently accused of taking sides, a new station based here and aiming to capture an audience across the Arabic-speaking world is promising a counterweight to the current giants of the industry, which are owned by conservative Persian Gulf governments. | 03/09/12 17:06:00 By - David Enders

Wounded from Syria finding refuge in Lebanon

Fighters battling the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad have smuggled more than 1,000 wounded Syrians to Lebanon for treatment as medical services become nearly impossible to find in areas sympathetic to the rebels. | 03/06/12 16:21:00 By - David Enders

Rebels in Syrian city are surrounded, braced for assault

This city of 35,000 is largely empty. Seven miles from the Lebanese border, Qusayr is the last rebel stronghold in this part of Syria. | 03/03/12 16:03:00 By - David Enders

Syria splits along sectarian lines, shaking Mideast

Resting in a safe house south of the shell-battered city of Homs, Syrian rebel Abu Abdo at first framed the conflict convulsing his country as a war between the Sunni Muslim majority and the authoritarian regime of President Bashar Assad. | 03/02/12 18:19:00 By - David Enders and Jonathan S. Landay

Rebel ammo runs low as Syrian government presses attack

Commanders of the militia that's fighting against the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad say they're running low on ammunition here and won't conduct any offensive operations until they find a way to resupply. | 02/29/12 18:52:00 By - David Enders

As Syria holds referendum on constitution, rebels vow to fight on

On the Lebanon-Syria border, Syrian refugees scoffed Sunday at the idea of a referendum on a new constitution proposed by President Bashar Assad. | 02/26/12 17:11:00 By - David Enders and Hannah Allam

Syrian troops apparently halt Homs shelling as some wounded are evacuated

Syrian Arab Red Crescent workers rescued a small number of wounded civilians Friday from the hard-hit Baba Amr neighborhood of the city of Homs as representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Syrian government negotiated over a ceasefire that would allow still larger evacuations. | 02/24/12 18:19:00 By - David Enders

Syrian forces retake Zabadani as rebels withdraw, refugees say

Syrian forces loyal to President Bashar Assad have driven most rebel fighters from the town of Zabadani, northwest of Damascus, in a vicious assault that refugees reaching Lebanon's Bekaa Valley say is similar to the one that's now taking place in Homs, Syria's third largest city. | 02/22/12 16:02:00 By - David Enders

Syria sets referendum for Feb. 26 as refugees flock to Lebanon

Syrian state media announced Tuesday that the country would hold a referendum Feb. 26 on a new constitution even as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees predicted that ongoing fighting in that country would drive growing numbers of Syrians to seek refuge inside Lebanon. | 02/15/12 15:02:00 By - David Enders

Syrian violence finds its echo in Lebanon

In this northern Lebanese city, two adjoining neighborhoods reflect the growing concern that the violence raging in Syria could soon spill into Lebanon, whose own sectarian civil war captivated the world a generation ago. | 02/13/12 16:28:00 By - David Enders

Huge numbers of Iraqis still adrift within the country

Of all the problems that the U.S. troop withdrawal won't affect in Iraq, what to do about the number of internally displaced people looms the largest. As many as 2 million Iraqis — about 6 percent of the country's estimated population of more than 31 million — are thought to have been forced from the cities and towns where they once lived and are housed in circumstances that feel temporary and makeshift. | 12/11/11 00:01:00 By - David Enders

Election shows Islamists truly are Egypt's best-organized force

It rained here on election day, but the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party was prepared: Its election workers, sometimes a half-dozen men or more at each polling station, sported matching neon yellow raincoats and baseball caps bearing the party logo. | 11/28/11 17:27:00 By - David Enders

Egypt's military says it will cede power next year; demonstrators demand more

The head of Egypt's embattled ruling military council on Tuesday pledged a faster transfer of power to civilians and a new caretaker government, but his promises were instantly rejected by tens of thousands of protesters who roared their objection to Field Marshal Mohammed Hussein Tantawi's offer in one word: "Leave!" | 11/22/11 20:00:00 By - Hannah Allam and David Enders

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