Syrian Rebels Are Losing Aleppo

(Washington Post) Liz Sly and Zakaria Zakaria - Syrian rebels battled for their survival in and around Syria's northern city of Aleppo on Thursday after a blitz of Russian airstrikes helped government loyalists sever a vital supply route from the Turkish border. The onslaught against rebel positions in Aleppo coincided with the failure of peace talks in Geneva. The rebels had maintained control of much of Aleppo, Syria's largest city, since 2012. Most of the pro-government forces now fighting in northern Aleppo province are Shiite militias from Iraq and Afghanistan recruited by Iran. The intervention by the Russian air force has mostly targeted moderate rebels, tilting the military balance in favor of Assad and enabling the government's spurt of gains in recent weeks. In its determination to see peace talks get underway, the U.S. had pressured the rebels' allies, including Turkey and Saudi Arabia, to curtail supplies of weapons, leaving the rebels vulnerable to the new offensive, according to rebel commanders.

2016-02-05 00:00:00

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