Italy’s Matera in cultural limelight after slum ‘shame’

European Capital of Culture status has shone a spotlight on Italy’s oldest city, whose previous claims to fame were as a cinematic “New Jerusalem” but also its “shameful” slums. Matera, around 9,000 years old and one of the world’s longest continuously inhabited cities, after Aleppo and Jericho, on Saturday embarked on a 48-week extravaganza ushering it out of the shadows into the global cultural limelight.

Aftermath of Russian airstrikes on Aleppo’s province

Residents in the rebel-held towns of Daret Izza and Orum al-Kubra, west of the Aleppo province, clear rubble after their homes were hit by Russian airstrikes late Friday, killing two civilians in the town of Daret Izza, according to a monitor. Airstrikes by Syrian regime ally Russia hit the west of Aleppo province late on January 4, the first such raids in the area since a deal between Moscow and rebel backer Ankara to stave off a massive regime offensive on the wider Idlib region in September 2018.

Turkish-backed Syrian fighters head to Manbij

Turkish-backed Syrian fighters gather in the north of Aleppo province before heading to the Kurdish-controlled town of Manbij and areas East of the Euphrates river.

Blinded in war, former Syrian fighter guides others with app

Years after losing his eyesight in battle, former Syrian rebel fighter Ahmad Talha is helping other visually-impaired people in the northern province of Aleppo use their smartphones using a screen reader app.

Reunited after leaving Aleppo, doctors treat kids with hope

Her scarred hands wrapped in gloves, Malakeh Harbaliyya lifts an infant out of an incubator at a hospital in Syria’s rural north, holding him gently as he guzzled milk from a bottle. Nearly two years ago, the nurse and her brave colleagues were scrambling to save premature babies from heavy regime bombardment of Aleppo city, before ultimately being forced to quit the facility altogether.