Assad's forces pound Aleppo, declare victory in Damascus

Government forces have succeeded in reimposing their grip the capital after a punishing battle, but rebels are still in control of sections of Aleppo, clashing with reinforced army troops for several days…

Rebel fighters, patrolling opposition districts in flat-bed trucks flying green-white-and-black “independence” flags, said they were holding off Assad’s forces in the south-western Aleppo district of Salaheddine, where clashes have gone on for days.

Opposition activists also reported fighting in other rebel-held districts of Aleppo, in what could herald the start of a decisive phase in the battle for Syria’s commercial hub, after the army sent tank columns and troop reinforcements last week.

Helicopter gunships hovered over the city shortly after dawn and the thud of artillery boomed across neighborhoods. Syrian state television said soldiers was repelling “terrorists” in Salaheddine and had captured several of their leaders.