Syria`s exiled opposition praised France on Sunday for maintaining its "exemplary" opposition to President Bashar al-Assad after a group of French lawmakers made a controversial visit to Damascus this week.
Kurdish fighters seized a strategic Islamic State stronghold in Syria Friday in a move that could impede jihadist movements near the border with Iraq, where they also control large swathes of territory.
France`s Prime Minister Manuel Valls said on Thursday that he "condemned with the greatest strength" a decision by three French lawmakers to meet with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whom he described as "a butcher".
Four French lawmakers who say they are on a private visit to Syria, despite a breakdown in diplomatic ties between Paris and Damascus, met with President Bashar al-Assad on Wednesday, one of them said.
Syrian government forces and their Lebanese Shi`ite militant allies took new ground in a major offensive in southern Syria on Wednesday, pressing a campaign against Sunni insurgents posing one of the biggest remaining threats to Damascus.