Truce ends in Aleppo as aid heads for besieged town
ALEPPO – Agence France-Presse
A general view shows a damaged street with sandbags used as barriers in Aleppo's Saif al-Dawla district, Syria March 6, 2015 - REUTERS photoThe extended truce in Syria’s battleground city Aleppo expired May 12 with no new last-minute extension, as clashes continued elsewhere in the country and a besieged town near the capital prepared to receive its first humanitarian aid in four years.
Regime helicopters dropped barrel bombs on Aleppo’s rebel-held eastern districts with no reports of casualties, following air strikes overnight that killed two fighters.
In the Damascus region, aid agencies were to deliver relief supplies to the rebel-held town of Daraya on May 12, the first since 2012, the International Committee of the Red Cross said.
“This is the first ever humanitarian convoy to this town in the suburbs of Damascus since the beginning of the siege in November 2012,” ICRC spokesman Pawel Krzysiek said.
Meanwhile, al-Qaeda’s Syrian branch, the Nusra Front, and other insurgents captured Zaara, an Alawite village, from government control in western Syria on May 12 and abducted civilians living there, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
Government forces and their allies were still fighting insurgents nearby after the capture of Zaara, which lies close to a main highway linking the western cities of Homs and Hama, the British-based monitoring group said.
Several government fighters and a number of the rebels, who included the al Qaeda-affiliated Nusra Front, had been killed and government warplanes and helicopters were carrying out air raids in and around al-Zara, it said. The insurgents had also captured government fighters.
The Observatory also said that Syrian regime killed at least seven civilians, including a child, in air strikes on May 11 in the east of Deir Ezzor province, which is held by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
Syrian regime forces May 11 also battled jihadists who cut a key supply route west of ancient Palmyra, after new bombardments hit Aleppo city.
A military source told the SANA official news agency that the Syrian air force had carried out strikes against ISIL around the main facility in the Shaer gas field, northwest of Palmyra.