Syrian army in 'final stages' of recapturing Aleppo
The Syrian army and its allies are in the "final stages" of recapturing Aleppo after a sudden advance that has pushed rebels to the brink of collapse in a shrinking enclave, a Syrian general said yesterday
Destroyed buildings in Aleppo's Sheikh Saeed district on Monday after Syrian pro-government forces retook the area from rebels. Pic/AFP
Beirut: The Syrian army and its allies are in the "final stages" of recapturing Aleppo after a sudden advance that has pushed rebels to the brink of collapse in a shrinking enclave, a Syrian general said yesterday.
A Reuters journalist in the government-held zone said the bombardment of rebel areas had continued nonstop overnight, and a civilian trapped there described the situation there as resembling Doomsday. "The battle in eastern Aleppo should end quickly. They (rebels) don't have much time. They either have to surrender or die," Lieutenant General Zaid al-Saleh, head of the government's Aleppo security committee, told reporters in the recaptured Sheikh Saeed district of the city.
Pro-government forces were clashing with insurgents in the Fardous district, which was at the heart of the besieged pocket only days ago, after taking Sheikh Saeed in the south and Saliheen in the east, a rebel official said. "The situation is extremely difficult today," said Zakaria Malahifji of the Fastaqim rebel group fighting in Aleppo. The rebels' sudden retreat represented a "big collapse in terrorist morale", a Syrian military source said.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, backed by Russia, is now close to taking back full control of Aleppo.
No. of rebels surrendering since the start of the battle
No. of civilians leaving areas of Aleppo controlled by militants
Water activist Amla Ruia speaks to mid-day