The massive civilian airport in Syria’s largest city of Aleppo has seen a growing series of rebel attacks over the past three days, with estimates putting the overall death toll at 150, split roughly evenly between rebels and military, and no sign of the fighting slowing down.
Rebels have made several moves against the airport in the past, attacking civilian aircraft flying out of the airport and forcing its closure last month. At its peek the airport served some 1.7 million passengers per year.
Local rebel commanders say that they intend to continue the current offensive until they take over the airport, while government forces say they plan to push for control of a military base near the airport, which fell to the rebels recently.
Much as with the battle for control of Aleppo itself or indeed, the entire civil war, the fight for the airport and the base appears stalemated at the moment, with both sides’ predictions of imminent victory seeming very premature.
In the meantime Aleppo, the nation’s industrial and financial hub, remains essentially closed for business, with millions of civilians struggling to go on with their lives in the face of an ever uglier civil war.