Internet services resume in Syria as fighting continues

Internet services resume in Syria as fighting continues

Fighting raged Saturday between Syrian government troops and rebels in the vicinity of Damascus airport, as internet services resumed in most areas across the country, opposition activists said, DPA reported.

"The internet is working again in most areas," Rami Abdel Rahman, the head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an activist grou, told dpa.

He added that telephone lines remained cut in most areas.

The government has blamed the disruption on "terrorists," while activists claimed authorities had cut off communications in preparation for a wide-scale attack against rebels.

At least 90 people were killed in violence on Saturday, activists said, most of them in areas on the outskirts of the capital and in the northern provinces of Idlib and Aleppo.

Government forces shelled the area of al-Basateen near Damascus in an attempt to secure the airport, said the Observatory.

The violence has prompted several airlines to suspend their flights to and from Damascus in the past two days.

Rebels also claimed they had downed a government jet in the area of Doumeir near Damascus.

The state-owned carrier is the only airline still operating at the Damascus airport. The office of Syria Air in Lebanon told dpa that one of its flights had landed at Beirut airport late Friday and that all its flights were operating normally.

The general manager of the Syrian Civil Aviation Authority Ghaidaa Abdul-Latif called on all foreign airlines to resume Damascus-bound flights, saying that security had been restored on the main road to the airport, state television reported.

News from Syria is hard to verify independently as authorities have barred most foreign media from restive areas since a pro-democracy uprising started in March last year.

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