At Least 49 Syrian Rebels Killed in Ambush Near Damascus

State Media Says Slain Were Members of al-Nusra

Syrian opposition spokesmen have confirmed that an ambush against rebel fighters on the outskirts of Damascus has left at least 49 of the fighters dead. The ambush was along a route the rebels use to smuggle arms to fighters inside the capital.

Syrian state media reports that the ambush happened on Sunday, and identified the slain as members of Jabhat al-Nusra, the al-Qaeda-linked faction of the rebels. They said one member of the Republican Guard was also killed in the fighting.

The fighting took place near Adra, a town just outside of Damascus which was briefly held by rebels, but which was retaken by the Syrian military months ago. The supply route was one of several the rebels use to funnel weapons around the country.

Control over towns on important highways is regularly contested, with neither the military nor the rebels able to really use those highways without risking clashes. This has made supply lines intermittent around the country for both sides.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.