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Decisive fighting continues in Syria

(Xinhua)

10:16, August 01, 2012

DAMASCUS, July 31 (Xinhua) -- Syrian forces are carrying on Tuesday with their operation to eradicate insurgency in the conflict-battered Aleppo province and elsewhere in the country amid reports talking about the presence of al-Qaida fighters and other "Jihadists" in the current clashes, which adds a horrifying element to the 17-month unrest.

The state-run SANA news agency said the army hunted down Tuesday armed groups in the Salahuddien district of Aleppo, costing them heavy losses. It said the army also conducted "a qualitative" operation with the help of local people in the Aleppo suburb of Handrat, inflicting hefty toll on the armed groups.

SANA also said that the Syrian forces clashed with "armed terrorist groups" on the outskirts of Aleppo and destroyed nine SUVs "with all terrorists inside."

Meanwhile, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said rebel fighters attacked Syrian police stations in Aleppo's central neighborhoods of Salhin and Bab al-Nayrab, and seized the buildings after hours of clashes, adding that at least 40 police officials had died in the attack.

The Observatory said that the neighborhoods of Tariq al-Bab and al-Meyser in Aleppo are being "violently bombarded by regime forces, who are using helicopters in their attack."

The activists' account cannot be independently verified.

The Aleppo clashes have been flaring up since last week, when the leaders of the insurgent groups announced their operation to " liberate Aleppo," the commercial capital of the country.

The rebels have pushed towards Aleppo apparently after being dispelled from the capital by the Syrian forces.
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