Syrian army kills 150 Nusra Front rebels near Damascus
A handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) allegedly shows the corpses of dozens of rebel fighters whom state media and a monitoring group said were killed on February 26, 2014 in an army ambush east of Damascus. (AFP)
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Syrian troops loyal to President Bashar Assad killed dozens of Al Qaeda-linked rebels in an army ambush near Damascus, state media reported Wednesday.
SANA reported that the rebels, who were members of the Al Qaeda-affiliated Nusra Front group, were killed near Oteibah lake southeast of Damascus, according to the Associated Press.
A colonel in the Syrian army told Al Mayadeen that the movement of his troops had been informed by intelligence reports and that Nusra Front had lost "more than 150 men" in Wednesday's ambush.
Syrian human rights organizations and activists have yet to release a statement confirming the attack or stating whether those killed did belong to the Nusra Front, AP reported.
In the Al Mayadeen broadcast, state army tanks and armored personnel carriers were seen on the scene, as were soldiers patrolling on foot.
According to activists in Syria, the nearly three-year-old conflict has claimed the lives of some 140,000 people.