Syrian rebels attempt to storm government complex, police academy near northern city of Aleppo


Associated Press

Posted on February 24, 2013 at 3:00 PM

Updated Sunday, Feb 24 at 3:04 PM

BEIRUT (AP) — Syrian rebels are trying to deliver another strategic blow to President Bashar Assad's forces.

Rebel fighters using captured tanks have launched a fresh offensive on a government complex near the northern city of Aleppo. The complex houses a police academy and several smaller army outposts. Activists say the government is responding with airstrikes to try to protect the installation.

The attack comes as rebels log a string of strategic victories against Assad's troops. Assad's regime has lost control of key infrastructure in the northeast including a hydroelectric dam, a major oil field and two army bases along the road linking Aleppo with the airport to its east.

Rebels also have been hitting the heart of Damascus with occasional mortars shells or bombings, posing a stiff challenge to the regime in its seat of power.

%@AP Links

160-v-27-(Mark Lavie (lah-VEE'), AP Middle East correspondent)--Syrian rebels are attacking strategic installations in the country's north. AP Middle East Correspondent Mark Lavie reports. (24 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *160 (02/24/13)>> 00:27

161-c-10-(Mark Lavie (lah-VEE'), AP Middle East correspondent)-"back with airstrikes"-AP Middle East Correspondent Mark Lavie reports Syrian rebels are on the move in the north. (24 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *161 (02/24/13)>> 00:10 "back with airstrikes"

162-c-15-(Mark Lavie (lah-VEE'), AP Middle East correspondent)-"around the country"-AP Middle East Correspondent Mark Lavie reports Syrian rebel forces are attacking a strategic complex. (24 Feb 2013)

<<CUT *162 (02/24/13)>> 00:15 "around the country"