Syrian Forces Intensify
Syrian helicopter gunships and artillery have pounded two key areas of Aleppo. They are extending the army's campaign to control the country's biggest city. Heavy gunfire sounded from the Salaheddin district in the southwest of the city as the opposition denied the government's claims that rebel fighters had been driven out by troops loyal to President Bashar al-Assad. Rebel fighters said it was the regime troops that had been forced to retreat. "The regime has tried for three days to regain Saleheddin, but its attempts have failed and it has suffered heavy losses in human life, weapons and tanks, and it has been forced to withdraw," said Colonel Abdel-Jabbar al-Oqaidi, head of the Joint Military Council, one of several rebel groups in Aleppo.