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Russian warplanes strike Nusra Front militants in Syria's Idlib

Russian warplanes strike Nusra Front militants in Syria's Idlib

US President Donald Trump warned that "the world is watching" as Syrian troops mass on the edges of the province that borders Turkey, raising fears of a humanitarian disaster.

As United States Special Representative for Syria Engagement James Jeffrey, also a former American ambassador to Ankara, concluded his trip to Turkey, the US embassy on Tuesday reiterated its concern for a Syrian regime military offensive in Syria's Idlib.

The Russian military says it struck militant targets far from residential areas.

The government holds a small southeastern sliver.

The verbal clash came as towns and villages in the northern Idlib province, where Syria's rebels are holed up, came under intense airstrikes, killing at least eight people, according to a search and rescue group and a conflict monitoring group.

Trump on Wednesday said Idlib province is now "surrounded by a lot of people with a lot of weapons" and expressed concern about the 3 million civilians he said now live in Idlib.

They were heading north towards rebel-held territory in neighbouring Aleppo province, the Britain-based monitor said.

President Bashar al-Assad's regime has retaken large swathes of the country from rebels and militants since Russian Federation intervened militarily on its side in 2015.

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Damascus and its main backer Moscow have vowed to root out the jihadist groups that dominate Idlib province.

Asked about Trump's tweet, Peskov said such warnings do not consider "the unsafe and negative potential" of the rebel-held enclave and show that the White House does not have a "comprehensive approach" to solving the Syria crisis.

Friday's summit in Tehran between key power brokers Erdogan, Putin and Iran's President Hassan Rouhani is expected to determine the scope and timing of any assault on Idlib.

"Our cooperation with Russian Federation now is very important".

"Let us be clear, it remains our firm stance that if President Bashar al-Assad chooses to again use chemical weapons, the United States and its allies will respond swiftly and appropriately", the statement read.

Mr Woodward's book, which comes in at just under 500 pages, is due out next Tuesday and confirms virtually every suspicion about the problems with Trump and the utter dysfunction of his White House.

US Defence Chief Jim Mattis later dismissed reports that fighters inside Idlib may hold such weapons.

The United States and Turkey both believe that a diplomatic solution should be established for the crisis in Syria's Idlib to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe, the U.S. Embassy in Ankara said in statement Tuesday.