Clashes Escalate in Syria: More Than 100 Reported Killed Nationwide

Hundreds Also Wounded as Major Cities Turn to Warzones

by Jason Ditz, August 23, 2012

Fighting is continuing to escalate across Syria, as regime forces try to oust the rebels from Damascus suburbs and battles continue in the major northern city of Aleppo and the key southeastern city of Daraa. Estimates have 100 people killed today.

Rebels familiar with the situation say that Daraa has virtually fallen back to the military, and that armed rebel factions have already fled from the city and troops are nearing the center, backed by helicopters.

The army is also said to have launched a fresh offensive in Aleppo, the nation’s largest city which has been contested for weeks. Despite optimism on both sides about a quick victory, the city seems to be stalemated, with civilians stuck in the middle and industry grinding to a halt.

The rebels claimed more than half of the people killed today were civilians, but there is no way to verify this. In the past rebel allegations of large civilian tolls have not always borne out, and they have regularly counted their own casualties among the civilian dead.

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