Syrian army repels al-Qaeda incursion into Shia villages

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Middle East
Saturday, 10 January 2015

Syrian army has repelled an incursion by an al-Qaeda affiliated militant group into two Shia Muslim villages in the northwestern province of Aleppo, a UK-based Syria opposition group says.

According to the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, severe clashes erupted between troops and the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front terrorist group in the villages of Nubol and Zahraa in war-battered Aleppo Province.

It added that the al-Nusra militants reportedly entered the villages with seven tanks.

"It was a major, simultaneous attack," the opposition group said, adding that the Syrian National Defense Force, backed by the country’s air force, managed to repel the attack and force the terrorists to withdraw.

At least 14 militants were killed during the clashes and three tanks were left behind.

Al-Nusra Front militants launched an offensive in November 2014 aimed at seizing Nubol and Zahraa, which have been under militants’ siege for a year and a half.

Syria has been grappling with a deadly crisis since March 2011. The violence fueled by Takfiri groups has so far claimed the lives of over 200,000 people, according to reports. New figures show that over 76,000 people, including thousands of children, lost their lives in Syria last year.

The Western powers and their regional allies - especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey - are supporting the militants operating in Syria.

The government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has vowed to push ahead with its efforts to root out terrorism in the country and establish national reconciliation.

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