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Rebels killed 800 militant loyal to Assad in Ghouta battles: statement

Local | 2013-12-16 00:00:00
Rebels killed 800 militant loyal to Assad in Ghouta battles: statement

General leadership of rebels command in Eastern Ghotua in statement issued today said more than 800 militant of the forces loyal to Basher al-Assad have been killed in Ghouta recent battles. 

The statement said that rebels had captured 44 armored vehicles and had liberated many villages and towns.   

Fierce fighting has erupted since last month to the east of Damascus as Syrian rebels struggle to break a months-long blockade by regime forces.

The fighting began on mid November when rebel units attacked a string of military checkpoints encircling the opposition-held suburbs in Eastern Ghouta, which has been under siege for more than six months.

 The blockade has cut off rebels’ weapons supplies and helped turn the tide of fighting around the capital in Al Assad’s favour.

The battle had also drawn in hundreds of foreign fighters on both sides, underlining how Syria’s civil war has stirred Sunni-Shiite tensions across the region.

Assad's military resurgence this year has relied to a great extent on support from Shi'ite Iran and fighters from Lebanon's Hezbollah and Iraqi militias, some of them based around a Shi'ite shrine southeast of Damascus.

They have helped turn the tide against the Sunni Muslim rebels, whose ranks are increasingly dominated by Islamist fighters and al Qaeda-linked foreign jihadists.

"In the last few months Assad has been increasingly leaving the fighting in the urban areas, especially Damascus and its environs, to his Shi'ite allies," a Middle East security official said according to Reuters.

Hezbollah and its patron Iran do not comment on their operations in Syria.

The statement said that rebels had captured 44 armored vehicles and had liberated many villages and towns.   

 The conflict in Syria has killed more than 126,000 people, according to Human Rights NGO's.

Zaman Alwasl
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