Syrian army recaptures the strategic town of Deir Attiyeh
Rebels and civilians carry the body of a man killed after an air strike by pro-government forces on the Syrian city of Aleppo on November 28, 2013. [AFP]
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Tens of Syrian civilians were allegedly killed in a town north of Damascus by fighters belonging to the Lebanese Hezbollah militant group and Syrian government forces, local activists reported on Friday.
The civilians were murdered when Hezbollah militias and Syrian troops stormed Deir Attiyeh in the town of Qalamoun near Damascus, according to Sham, the Syrian opposition activist news network.
The Syrian army recaptured Deir Attiyeh on Thursday, only six days after rebel fighters seized the town on the strategic highway between Damascus and the central city of Homs.
“Our heroic army has taken total control of the town of Deir Attiyeh in Damascus province after it crushed the terrorists’ last enclaves there,” Syrian state TV said, citing a military source.
On Friday last week, hundreds of jihadists from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and al-Nusra Front took control of Deir Attiyeh, according to a monitoring group and the opposition.Most of the rebel fighters who had taken up positions in Deir Attiyeh were “crushed,” the security official said, adding that the town had been “cleansed.”
Home to around 10,000 people, Deir Attiyeh is located in the Qalamoun region north of Damascus and along the Lebanese border.