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Syria Direct: News Update 12-08-2013

* Rebel battalions detonated explosives targeting government troops quartered near […]

8 December 2013

NewsUpdateDec2013* Rebel battalions detonated explosives targeting government troops quartered near the Zeino intersection in Aleppo’s Saif al-Dowla neighborhood, reported the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on Sunday. Violent clashes continue as government troops, National Defense forces and Hezbollah fighters combat Islamic State in Iraq and a-Sham militants near the Sheikf Yusuf building and the Transportation Administration in southeast Aleppo, resulting in casualties on both sides, the Observatory added.

* The Syrian Media Center in Qalamoun said 40 people were killed Saturday in a massacre after government troops seized control of the Al-Fatah neighborhood in nearby Nabek. “Shabiha, Iraqi and Lebanese militias which fight on the Assad regime’s side slaughtered the civilians and cremated their bodies,” said a media center spokesperson. The Syrian Observatory of Human Rights demanded a cease-fire and immediate humanitarian access Saturday to the town, which lies north of Damascus near Syria’s western border with Lebanon. It reports 18 citizens, including children and the elderly, were killed in Al-Fateh.

* The Islamic Front gained control of the Free Syrian Army’s Joint Chiefs of Staff’s headquarters and ammunition warehouses Saturday at the Bab al-Howa border crossing into Turkey, reported pro-opposition website All4Syria.  The Islamic Front’s Ahrar al-Sham battalion seized the post after intervening to protect the FSA’s 1st battalion from attacks by ISIS.  “A faction launched an attack on the Joint Chiefs of Staff and they demanded support from us, so we met it,” said Zahran Alloush, the Islamic Front’s military commander.


Bab al-Hawa crossing point

The Bab al-Howa border crossing between Turkey and Syria.

* Syrian National Coalition Spokesperson Luay Safi lashed out against Iran and Russia Saturday, declaring that Assad’s sponsors aim to fuel “the devastating military conflict inside Syrian society in order to maintain the instability in which Syrians live.”

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