Saturday, July 21, 2012

Syrians flee fierce fighting in Aleppo

Thousands of residents flee northern city amid bloody clashes between Free Syrian Army fighters and government troops

Luke Harding and Martin Chulov in Beirut and agencies, Saturday 21 July 2012

"Fierce fighting has erupted in Syria's historic northern city of Aleppo, with thousands of residents forced to flee amid bloody clashes between resurgent Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters and government troops.

Activists posted video footage showing locals fleeing Aleppo in cars and minibuses early on Saturday, after the authorities warned they would shell rebel-controlled districts. Most of the fighting was raging in the Salaheddin part of the city, where FSA fighters were massing in large numbers, the activists said......

Israel, the region's most formidable power, meanwhile, announced it would consider military action to prevent Syria's chemical weapons and missiles arsenal from falling into the hands of Hezbollah, Assad's Shia Islamist allies in neighbouring Lebanon.

The defence minister, Ehud Barak, said:"I have instructed the military to increase its intelligence preparations and prepare what is needed so that … (if necessary) … we will be able to consider carrying out an operation.""

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