Syrian forces on the offensive (Ciidamada Suuriya Oo Qaaday Weerar)
AFP PHOTO / HO / SHAAM NEWS NETWORK
Syrian troops backed by helicopter gunships and armour are reported to be gaining ground in their battle with rebels holding parts of Damascus and the country’s second city Aleppo.
The rebels meanwhile have seized yet another border crossing into Turkey.
Heavy fighting rocks Syrian capital Damascus, Aleppo
Syrian rebels battled President Bashar al-Assad’s forces near the main intelligence base in the northern city of Aleppo on Sunday as helicopter gunships bombarded several districts of Damascus in an effort to drive out insurgents, witnesses said.
Fighting raged in other parts of Aleppo, Syria’s main commercial and industrial hub, while in the capital Assad’s forces appeared to clawing back territory, driving rebels from Mezze district, residents and opposition activists said.
Elite Fourth Division troops were besieging the northern Damascus neighbourhood of Barzeh, they said.
Syria rebels hold north Iraq border posts
Syrian rebels took control of the main crossing between Iraq and Syria along the two countries’ northern border on Saturday, the governor of the Iraqi province of Nineveh told AFP.
“Iraqi officials from the crossing called me and they said that at 5:00 pm (1400 GMT), some gunmen took control of the Yaribiyah crossing and they were informed that the crossing is now in the hands of the Free Syrian Army,” Atheel al-Nujaifi said, referring to the Rabiyah crossing by its Syrian name.
He told AFP that because the official working hours of the crossing ended at 4:00 pm, Iraqi officials had already closed their side of the border when it was taken over by Syrian rebels.
BBC, Reuters, AFP
Jul 22, 2012 17:20