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SANA (Syria), REUTERS

Worldcrunch

BEIRUT - Sixty-two rebel fighters were killed in a Syrian army ambush at dawn on Wednesday near the town of Adra, east of Damascus, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitoring group opposed to President Bashar al-Assad.

The state news agency SANA did not give a death toll for the ambush but said the rebels were from the al Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front. It said all the rebels were killed and machineguns and rocket-propelled grenades were confiscated.

SANA said the "terrorists" included non-Syrians and the Observatory said that eight rebels were still unaccounted for after the attack, which happened west of an industrial area east of Adra. Assad's forces have been on the offensive around Damascus after rebels pushed into towns and suburbs on the outskirts of the capital last year.

READ MORE FROM REUTERS.

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Free Syrian Army rebels - Photo : Freedom House

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Society

How India’s Women Are Fighting Air Pollution — And The Patriarchy

India is one of the world's worst countries for air pollution, with women more likely to be affected by the problem than men. Now, experts and activists are fighting to reframe pollution as a gendered health crisis.

A woman walking through dense fog in New Delhi

*Saumya Kalia

MUMBAI In New Delhi, a city that has topped urban air-pollution charts in recent years, Shakuntala describes a discomfort that has become too familiar. Surrounded by bricks and austere buildings, she tells an interviewer: "The eyes burn and it becomes difficult to breathe". She is referring to the noxious fumes she routinely breathes as a construction worker.

Like Shakuntala, women’s experiences of polluted air fill every corner of their lives – inside homes, in parks and markets, on the way to work. Ambient air in most districts in India has never been worse than it is today. As many as 1.67 million people in the country die prematurely due to polluted air. It is India’s second largest health risk after malnutrition.

This risk of exposure to air pollution is compounded for women. Their experiences of toxic air are more frequent and often more hazardous. Yet “policies around air quality have not yet adequately taken into account gender or other factors that might influence people’s health,” Pallavi Pant, a senior scientist at the Health Effects Institute, a nonprofit in the U.S., told The Wire Science.

“It’s unacceptable that the biggest burden [rests on] those who can least bear it,” Sherebanu Frosh, an activist, added. People like her are building a unique resistance within India.

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