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Syrian Opposition Says Government Siege Of Aleppo Broken


Empty vegetable stalls are pictured in Aleppo's rebel-controlled Bustan al-Qasr neighborhood due to a siege by Syrian pro-government forces on August 5.

Empty vegetable stalls are pictured in Aleppo's rebel-controlled Bustan al-Qasr neighborhood due to a siege by Syrian pro-government forces on August 5.

Syrian opposition fighters say they have broken a three-week government siege of the city of Aleppo on August 6, days after launching a counteroffensive against Russia-backed Syrian government forces that are now on the defensive.

The Istanbul-based opposition National Coalition says it successfully broke the siege by opening a new route into the city from the southwest.

Opposition fighters and militant Islamists have waged fierce assaults since July 31 to end the siege, which trapped an estimated 250,000 civilians in Aleppo’s eastern districts.

An Islamist faction called Ahrar al-Sham said fighters had seized control of Ramussa on the southwestern edges of the city and thereby "opened the route to Aleppo."

But Syrian state television said late on August 6 that the army had regained control of several key points in a military complex south of Aleppo that opposition fighters had overrun earlier.

Heavy fighting and air strikes reported from the area suggest any passage that may have been opened would not be secure for civilians to travel through.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AP, AFP, and TASS
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