Nusra Front to Leave Aleppo Barracks: Source

Regime troops have made rapid advances since last week in Aleppo

 

One day after withdrawing from Aleppo's Shariah Authority, the Nusra Front is preparing to leave its checkpoints and barracks in Aleppo city, a rebel source said.

 

The Al-Qaeda-linked group called for an urgent meeting with key rebel groups on Thursday in the northern Syrian city to discuss recent escalations as well as to find a substitute for its fighters who are leaving their checkpoints.

 

Meanwhile, opposition activists warn of further rifts between rebels ranks as regime troops have made rapid advances since last week in Aleppo.

 

Regime forces have taken strategic ground around Aleppo, residents and state media said on Wednesday, squeezing the main rebel supply line into the city after months of battlefield gains by Damascus, Reuters reported.

 

The government advance, after close to two years of stalemate, was bolstered by fighters from the Lebanese Shi'ite Muslim group Hezbollah, an ally of Bashar Assad, according to Reuters.

 

Rebels pushed into Aleppo, once Syria's commercial hub, in 2012 from the north and took districts in the heart of the city. Since then, the army has held the west and south of Aleppo but has been unable to dislodge opposition fighters.

 

The advance follows months of incremental gains by pro-government forces. Assad has demonstrated a tenacious hold on power after three years of brutal civil war and is due to be sworn in for a new term on 17 July.

 

Translated and edited by The Syrian Observer

 

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