Rebels fail to reopen Aleppo supply route

Jul 11, 2016, 3:53 AM EDT
Syrian rebels
(Source: Global Panorama/flickr)

At least 29 Syrian rebels were killed on Sunday during a failed bid to reopen a critical supply route that leads into the opposition-held eastern half of Aleppo city. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that the government troops used land mines to eliminate the fighters, who belonged to the Faylaq al-Sham rebel group and al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front. The latest offensive comes after the government forces seized a hilltop within the firing range of Castello Road and opened fire on any vehicle that used the route.

The eastern part of Aleppo, which houses about 200,000 people, is now effectively besieged by government troops, writes Al Jazeera.  Human rights groups say that the residents in the region have started facing a shortfall of basic supplies including food and fuel.

President Bashar al-Assad’s forces have been using siege tactics to pressure the opposition fighters, notes The Times of Israel. According to the United Nations, more than 600,000 people are forced to live in besieged areas in Syria either under the control of government forces or in rebel-held areas.

The rebel forces carried out a wave of rocket strikes on the regime-held west of Aleppo, killing about 45 people on Friday, Syria's state news agency S.A.N.A. reported.