Smoke rises from buildings following a reported strike on a rebel-held area of the Jobar district, east of the Syrian capital on October 6, 2017. / AFP / AMER ALMOHIBANY
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Al-Qaeda-linked fighters on Friday attacked a key central Syrian village at the crossroads between areas under government control and those controlled by insurgent groups, opposition activists said.The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said al-Qaeda fighters captured several village tribesmen following the attack in the early hours of Friday. The HTS-linked Ibaa news agency did not mention the attack but said Russian warplanes were bombing areas the group controls in northern Syria.Violence in eastern Syria has escalated significantly in recent weeks as Syrian troops with the help of Russian air cover are closing in on Mayadin, a new Daesh (ISIS) stronghold after the extremists came under attacks in the cities of Raqqa and Deir al-Zor.Gen. Igor Konashenkov, said IS militants have used the area around the town of Tanf near Syria's border with Jordan -- where U.S. military instructors are also stationed -- to launch attacks against the Syrian army.
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