Two pro-regime fighters killed in Damascus airport blast: monitor

Two pro-regime fighters killed in Damascus airport blast: monitor

President TrumpDonald John TrumpKasich says Republican Party is "shrinking" Graham: Ivanka Trump's "very nice" comments about McCain "not unnoticed by the family" McCarthy leads GOP charge against Silicon Valley MORE on Monday warned Syrian President Bashar Assad and his allies Iran and Russian Federation against attacking Syria's rebel-held Idlib province, saying it would be a "grave humanitarian mistake". "Don't let that happen!"

"And the remaining terrorists in the remaining parts of Idlib must be cleaned out and the region should be placed back under the control of the Syrian people".

Mohammad Javad Zarif's comments in Damascus were reported by Iran's semi-official Fars news agency and came as Syrian forces and their allies are preparing for an assault on Idlib, the last opposition stronghold in the country.

An official in the regional alliance backing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad had earlier attributed the blasts to Israeli missile strikes.

Russian Federation and Iran have insisted that extremist groups in Idlib must be defeated and are expected to back regime forces in any assault.

Assad's office said in a statement: 'The two sides asserted that the pressures from some Western states on Syria and Tehran will not deter the two countries from continuing to defend their principles'.

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A Syrian research center located in Jamraya, a township in Rif Damashq Governorate near Damascus was one of the targets of the missile strikes that occurred overnight to Sunday, Al Jazeera said.

Idlib and the surrounding area is home to some 3 million people - almost half of them already displaced a couple of times by the civil war.

Syrian government forces are now massing around the northwestern province of Idlib, which is held by a complex array of rebels and violent extremist fighters, many of whom have been blacklisted as "terrorists" by world powers.

Iran has lent crucial military and economic support to Assad throughout the seven-year civil war and the discussions are expected to focus on the decisive battle for Idlib.

It also said talks were under way to establish a humanitarian corridor for civilians to leave Idlib.

The US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, said on Friday that Washington viewed any government assault on Idlib as an escalation of Syria's war, and the state department warned that Washington would respond to any chemical attack by Damascus.

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