With the Islamic State (IS) making rapid advances in northern Aleppo, key rebel factions have formed a joint command room to stop the invasion which the fear may reach border crossing with Turkey and deal a humiliating defeat to the rebels.
Sources with the Noureddin al-Zinki movement said the operation room includes the Nusra Front, the Mujahedeen Army and the Islamic Front.
Amid mounting rebel rifts and 8-months of infighting, analysts and activists are afraid of tragic fate for Aleppo, Syria’s commercial hub. The unstoppable advance by IS has raised fears and concerns of imminent defeat for rebels, similar to what happened in Mosul and the humiliating defeat on Kurdish forces Peshmerga and Iraqi forces.
On Wednesday, IS fighters seized two key towns and several villages in Syria’s Aleppo province after routing rival fighters, opposition groups and activists said.
Activists said IS captured the towns of Akhtarin and Turkmanbareh after fierce clashes with opposition rebels who are fighting to topple Syrian President Bashar Assad. The militants also took over a string of nearby villages, including Masoudiyeh, Dabiq and Ghouz.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that at least 31 rebels and eight IS fighters were killed in the clashes. The Observatory relies on a network of activists inside Syria for its information.
Translated and edited by The Syrian Observer