Attacks across Syria kill five: NGO
Beirut: A series of attacks across Syria today killed at least five people, a watchdog said, as the army and rebels clashed fiercely in and around Aleppo in a raging battle to control the nothern city.
Unidentified gunmen assassinated today morning Captain Firas Ibrahim al-Safi of Syrian air force on the road to Damascus airport, the Observatory said.
The pilot’s father, General Ibrahim al-Safi “held senior positions in the military leadership under former President Hafez al-Assad,” father of the current president Bashar- al-Assad, the watchdog said.
A teenage boy was killed by sniper fire in the town of Madamiyeh al-Sham, where regime troops set up checkpoints during the night, the Observatory added.
Shelling and shooting were also reported in the rural areas between the Damascus suburbs of Misraba and Harasta, where regime forces carried out raids in search for men wanted by the authorities.
And in the southern Damascus suburb of Artus, clashes broke out between the army and rebels before dawn. In the southern city of Daraa, a camp for displaced persons was exposed to shelling by regime forces, who clashed with opposition fighters, killing one rebel. A citizen was also killed by sniper fire, the Observatory said.
And in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor, one civilian died after being hit by gunfire in the early hours today in the town of Abu Kamal, the watchdog said. Clashes also broke out in Deir Ezzor city, where several shells fell on the neighbourhood of Jubaila.
In central province of Hama, regime forces raided the town of Bredij, arresting about 20 young men. Syrian forces and rebels meanwhile clashed violently in and around Aleppo early today as the battle for control of the northern city raged into a third day.
The fighting has sent some 200,000 civilians fleeing Aleppo, according to the UN which warned of a looming humanitarian catastrophe.
More than 20,000 people have been killed in Syria since the anti-Assad revolt began in March 2011, according to the Observatory. There is no way to independently verify this figure, while the UN has stopped keeping count.