Battle for Aleppo intensifies
DAMASCUS: The battle for the Syria’s second city of Aleppo took to an intensifying turn as helicopter gunships strafed several neighborhoods of the city causing deaths and injuries, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said yesterday.
In Aleppo, Syria’s commercial capital, clashes raged in the central Al-Jamaliya neighborhood, close to the local headquarters of the ruling Baath party. In Kalasseh, in the south of the city, rebels set fire to a police station, the Observatory said. Fighter jets overflew the city, breaking the sound barrier but not carrying out bombing raids, Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP.
A “large number” of troops have been moved from the northwestern province of Idlib to join the fighting in Aleppo, a rebel spokesman told AFP via Skype. Free Syrian Army Col. Abdel Jabbar Al-Oqaidi said he believed the reinforcements were being sent because of the intensity of clashes in Aleppo, where several districts were “liberated” on Monday.
“There are clashes right now in Aleppo, so fierce that many of their troops are running away, while dozens of others are defecting on the spot,” Oqaidi said. “Their morale is very low.”
Posted by: Steve White