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Aleppo: Syrian Army Rescue Christians, Clean US-backed Mercenaries Out

August 23, 2012 (TSR) - The Syrian Arab Forces are hardly hitting the mercenary terrorists in a number of neighborhoods in the city of Aleppo in a continued process to eliminate the armed terrorist groups in the province.

Syrian News Agency, SANA, quoted a reliable source in the province says that the Syrian army continues to repel armed groups in Aleppo where tens of terrorists have been killed in the operations, while others have dropped their weapons and turned themselves in.

Since 2011, Syrian Christians rally and beg Bashar al-Assad to stay are being massacred by US-backed terrorists

The army clashed with terrorists in Abbart Bolis and al-Haddadeh areas, according to the source, adding that scores of terrorists were arrested and snipers were killed.

The source also mentioned that the military engineering units dismantled an improvised explosive device (IED) planted by foreign-backed terrorists in al-Hatab Square in al-Jdeida area in Aleppo and clashed with the terrorists.

Killing three gunmen, one of them named Izzat Eddin Hassan.

The armed forces also arrested five terrorists in al-Jdeidah area, one of them was the leader of an armed terrorist group.

SANA also reported that one of the armed group terrorist units the armed forces clashed set up a barrier in front of the Sports Institute in the area of Bustan al-Basha. Most of its members were killed, while others were injured.

The army units also wiped out another armed terrorist group stationed in front of the Water Establishment in Suleiman al-Halabi area, killing tens of terrorists.

Another terrorist group was targeted near al-Khudr Mosque in the same area and was completely eliminated.

The source told SANA that an army unit conducted a qualitative operation in al-Firdous area and killed the group of terrorists positioned near al-Walid school. A group of terrorists were targeted in Jib al-Qubbeh area and were killed at the hands of the armed forces.

SANA also said that the Syrian Arab Forces continued chasing down the fleeing mercenary terrorists in Saif al-Dawla neighborhood in the city of Aleppo.

Local Syrian citizens have been actively assisting the army by informing the Syrian authorities of the movement and whereabouts of the terrorist groups thereby making it easier for the army to effectively carry out a qualitative operation in the neighborhood killing one of the leaders of the armed groups and arresting a number of terrorists.

The Syrian authorities seized large amounts of weapons, ammunition and medical equipment in the same area and confirmed the existence of persons from a number of Arab nationalities who are involved in the acts of violence against the Syrian people.

Another Syrian army qualitative operation killed countless number of terrorists who were stationed in the surrounding of al-Zaidiyeh Police Station in the area of Saif al-Dawla.

The Syrian armed forces also ambushed an armed terrorist group coming from Aleppo countryside that back up the terrorists in the city and killed all its members.

The terrorists’ cars were completely destroyed by the army unit, which some of them were equipped with machine guns.

CHRISTIANS RESCUED

The Syrian army has recaptured Christian areas in the city of Aleppo after heavy fighting with rebels, leaving streets desolated and deserted apart from local youths on patrol, residents said on Thursday.

“We have had the worst two days of our lives,” Sonia, the wife of a wealthy businessman in the northern city which is also Syria’s commercial capital, told AFP by telephone.

“If our house weren’t built like a fortress, we’d all be dead. The entrance is very badly damaged. We couldn’t sleep all night,” said the resident of Telal, which the army seized on Wednesday along with Jdeide and Sulamaniyeh.

Aleppo residents reported heavy exchanges in the heart of the city during the army’s offensive to recapture the three neighbourhoods seized by the rebels at the weekend.

Of the three Christian quarters in the historic Old City of Aleppo, Jdeide and Telal were once frequented by tourists for their restaurants and handicraft shops.

The rebel Free Syrian Army had also seized the nearby neighbourhood of Sulamaniyeh, most of whose inhabitants are Armenian Christians and which is home to ancient monasteries and a Melkite Greek Catholic cathedral.

The bishop of the cathedral on Farhat Square, left pockmarked by the fighting, himself had to beat a hasty retreat before the rebels moved in because of his pro-regime comments, another resident told AFP.

“The battles on Monday and Tuesday were very violent, and they lasted for many long hours before the army managed to expel the rebels,” said a local who declined to be named. He said dozens of rebels were rounded up.

“Hundreds of residents of the districts of Telal and Sulamaniyeh took to the streets to celebrate and express their support for the army,” he added.

“The army had to retake these neighbourhoods because many homes have tunnels leading to the nearby citadel.”

The state news agency SANA said civil defence and public services were “sent back immediately to carry out the necessary repairs and restore normal life to the neighbourhoods after they were cleansed of terrorists.”

Locals have set up “popular committees” to prevent their return, according to residents and a security source.

“It’s not very organised but there are youths especially in the Armenian districts protecting buildings against any new incursions. Some of them are armed and they can call on the army at any time to intervene,” a witness said.

After more than a month of fighting, the battle for Aleppo continued with fierce clashes and bombardment in other neighbourhoods of the city on Thursday, militants and residents said.

While much of the Sunni Muslim districts of Aleppo support the anti-regime revolt in Syria, Christian communities in the heart of Aleppo support President Bashar al-Assad for fear of an Islamist takeover of the country.

Critics within the Christian minority have warned of the price to pay for such support if the nominally secular regime falls.

According to researcher Fabrice Balanche, Aleppo has a population of 2.7 million people, of whom 85 percent are Sunnis and 10 percent Christians, half of them Armenians and the rest Assyrians, Greek Catholics and Maronites.

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