- Associated Press - Saturday, February 11, 2017

BEIRUT (AP) - The Latest on the war in Syria (all times local):

2:15 p.m.

The semi-official Tasnim news agency is reporting that Iran will allow Russian jetfighters to fly over its airspace to support military operations in Syria.

The Saturday report quotes Ali Shamkhami, secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council. He says: “Cooperation between Iran and Russia to fight against terrorism in Syria has wide and comprehensive dimensions.”

In August, Iran confirmed that Russian bombers had launched airstrikes from near the Iranian city of Hamedan, 280 kilometers (175 miles) southwest of the Iranian capital Tehran to hit targets in in eastern Syria.


2:05 p.m.

Syrian opposition forces say they have advanced inside the Islamic State-held town of al-Bab, in northern Syria.

The Turkish-backed Ahrar al-Sham militia announced Saturday on Twitter that opposition forces had taken the city’s silos and sports complex in its southwestern districts. The coalition’s operations room released a video on social media showing its fighters at the gates of the Hikma hospital. Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group also reported the hospital’s capture.

Turkish troops and aircraft are also engaged in the “Euphrates Shield” assault on al-Bab.

The Turkish-backed forces are racing to seize al-Bab before rival Syrian government forces arrive. The Observatory says government forces are about 1.5 kilometers (1 mile) away.

Al-Bab is 40 kilometers (25 miles) south of the Turkish border.

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