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Syria conflict: Government 'repels air base attack'

Arab World Materials 1 September 2012 12:53
The Syrian government says it has repelled a major rebel attack on an air base near the northern city of Aleppo, BBC reported.
Syria conflict: Government 'repels air base attack'

The Syrian government says it has repelled a major rebel attack on an air base near the northern city of Aleppo, BBC reported.

State TV showed vehicles with mounted machine guns and other equipment seized from the Rasm al-Abboud base attack.

This was one of several air bases which have come under attack in recent days, as opposition fighters try to halt the regime's use of helicopters and military jets to support ground forces.

About 100 people were killed in fighting on Friday, activists said.

Battles have continued in Aleppo, in suburbs of Damascus and in other parts of the country.

It is impossible to independently verify the claims, as reporting by foreign journalists is severely restricted in Syria.

State TV has been leading its bulletins with a report from the Rasm al-Abboud air force college, which it said had come under heavy attack by rebel fighters.

The pro-rebel Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and other activists said government troops had been killed and wounded in the attack, the Associated Press reported.

There are also reports by activists of prolonged fighting at the Abu Zohur air base in Idlib province.

And rebel sources quoted by the Dubai TV channel al-Arabiya said another air base in Deir al-Zour had been seized, its commander killed and 50 soldiers captured.

However, the BBC's Jim Muir in neighbouring Lebanon says the government seems no closer to winning control of Aleppo or taming the rebellious suburbs around the capital Damascus.

According to UN, the total number of victims of the conflict in Syria is nearing 20,000 people. More than 230,000 people have become refugees. About three million are in need of humanitarian assistance. The Syrian authorities say that they are opposing the well-armed militants.

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