Malta Independent - - WORLD -

Rebels ‘in push to break Aleppo siege’

Rebels in Syria have an­nounced a big of­fen­sive aimed at break­ing the gov­ern­ment siege of east Aleppo.

A UK-based mon­i­tor­ing group said the rebels had fired “hun­dreds” of mis­siles into western Aleppo, killing at least 15 civil­ians.

They are also re­ported to have tar­geted al-Nayrab mil­i­tary air­port to the east.

About 275,000 peo­ple have been be­sieged in the east by pro-gov­ern­ment forces for sev­eral months. Syria and its ally Rus­sia have re­cently in­ten­si­fied air strikes on the east. The at­tacks are so far com­ing from rebels out­side Aleppo but it is un­der­stood that rebels in­side the city will join the of­fen­sive.

“All the rev­o­lu­tion­ary fac­tions, with­out ex­cep­tion, are par­tic­i­pat­ing in the bat­tle,” the mil­i­tary spokesman for the Fas­taqim fac­tion in­side the city said, AP news agency re­ports.

Rebels fired Grad mis­siles at al-Nayrab, the Syr­ian Ob­ser­va­tory for Hu­man Rights (SOHR) mon­i­tor­ing group said. Up to 115 peo­ple were killed or wounded, it added.

They also det­o­nated two car bombs - one a dig­ger driven by a sui­cide bomber from Jab­hat Fateh al-Sham, for­merly the al-Qaeda-linked Nusra Front - against gov­ern­ment po­si­tions to the south-west of the city.

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