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Syrian rebels claim to take major Aleppo base

Saturday, August 06, 2016 - 01:40

Amateur video appears to show Syrian rebels seizing a major artillery base inside a government controlled area in Aleppo, in what would be a significant victory for the anti-Assad forces. Ashraf Fahim reports.

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Syrian rebels say they've scored a major victory in their fight to break the siege of eastern Aleppo. Amateur video purports to show them storming a large army artillery base deep inside government controlled territory. The rebels say they've taken over the base but the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says the attack was repelled. Government forces control western parts of Aleppo, Syria's second largest city, and have surrounded the rebel controlled east of the city with the help of Russian airpower. But the rebels could turn the tables on the government, cutting off their forces in the west, if they take the artillery base and nearby military training. 250,000 civilians have been trapped by the siege of Aleppo and are running desperately short of food and medicine. Islamist rebel groups have poured thousands of fighters into the battle for Aleppo which many say is a potential turning point in Syria's five year civil war. On a separate front in Syria, also on Saturday, forces fighting Islamic State say they've almost completely ousted the hardline militants from the northeastern city of Manbij. The forces include Kurdish militia and Arab fighters, with backing from U.S. special forces. Together, they've been trying to drive Islamic State from a last stretch of the Syrian-Turkish frontier.

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Syrian rebels claim to take major Aleppo base

Saturday, August 06, 2016 - 01:40