Fighting intensifies in Syria’s Aleppo

Fighting has intensified in Syria’s divided city of Aleppo, a day after a “humanitarian” pause announced by Russia ended, a monitoring group and rebels said.

Unidentified jets bombarded rebel-held areas in the south-western part of Aleppo on Sunday, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Lebanese Al-Manar TV, run by the Syria-aligned armed group Hezbollah, broadcast footage of tanks and fighters advancing under heavy fire along a ridge reportedly in the Aleppo countryside.

Rebels have also confirmed the bombardments on the opposition-held areas of the city.

The activist-run Shahba Press reported that government artillery shelled the strategically important village of Khan Touman, which overlooks the highway connecting Aleppo and government-held cities in the center of the country.

But a commander from the rebel Syrian Free Army, speaking on condition of anonymity, said opposition fighters had repulsed the attack and inflicted “big losses” on the regime forces.

His report could not be independently verified.

Meanwhile, opposition rebels have also launched counter-attacks, shelling the regime-held southern district of al-Hamadaniyah. No casualties have been reported so far.

A leading northern Syrian rebel coalition warned civilians in Aleppo to stay away from government positions around the city, as rebels and pro-government forces clashed along the city’s outskirts.

Yasser al-Yousef, a spokesman for the Nour el-Din al-Zinki rebel faction in Aleppo said an operation to break the government’s siege of the rebel-held eastern districts of Aleppo was “coming.”