Hundreds die in Syria police academy battle



Published — Monday 4 March 2013

Last update 5 March 2013 5:51 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

BEIRUT: Hundreds of Syrian troops and rebels were killed in a weeklong battle for a police academy in the northern province of Aleppo, with insurgents seizing control of most of the complex, a monitoring group said yesterday.
“Rebels have seized most of a police academy in Khan Al-Assal in Aleppo province ... after eight days of fighting that left 200 troops and rebels dead,” said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
The Britain-based group said at least 120 army troops were among those killed in the battle for one of the regime’s last remaining bastions in the west of Aleppo province. On Sunday alone, rebels had killed more than 34 troops at the facility.
A police source in Aleppo confirmed that much of the academy had fallen into rebel hands, reporting that 40 troops were believed dead. As many as 300 rebels were among those killed, he said.
Amateur video shot by fighters and distributed by the anti-regime Aleppo Media Center showed a black flag flying over one of the academy buildings, while a large poster of President Bashar Assad had been torn.
Another video showed rebels aboard a captured military vehicle and stashes of ammunition seized from the academy.
Elsewhere, three mortars hit an area near the army general command headquarters and a customs complex in the heart of Damascus, said the Observatory.
British Foreign Secretary William Hague said yesterday Assad was “delusional” for failing to see that the bloodshed in his country was at his own hands.
Hague said that he would this week announce more assistance to the Syrian opposition in the form of nonlethal equipment and refused to rule out the possibility of arming them in the future.
In an interview with British newspaper The Sunday Times, Assad accused London of wanting to arm terrorists in his country.
“How can we expect them to make the violence less while they want to send military supplies to the terrorists and don’t try to ease the dialogue between the Syrians?” Assad said in a rare interview with Western media.
Hague told BBC television: “This is a man presiding over this slaughter. “And the message to him is we, Britain, are the people sending food and shelter and blankets to help people driven from their homes and families in his name.
“We are the people sending medical supplies to try to look after people injured and abused by the soldiers working for this man.
“Assad thinks and is told by his inner circle that all of this is an international conspiracy, not the actual rebellion and revolt of his own people.
“This will go down as one of the most delusional interviews that any national leader has given in modern times.”
Iraq shut a border crossing with Syria yesterday after fighters seized the other side of the frontier post from his army, Iraqi military sources said. The Iraqi army fired warning shots into the air late on Friday as Syrian insurgents fought government forces in the Syrian town of Yaarabiya and eventually seized the border post.
“Iraqi authorities were ordered to shut off Rabia border crossing until further notice because of the Syrian government’s lack of control over the other side of the post,” police said.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: Demand for housemaids is so high in the holy month that illegal domestics, working in violation of residence and labor laws, can easily draw a salary of SR3,000 during Ramadan.Due to difficulties in the recruitment process, Saudis are left wi...
JEDDAH: Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman has condemned the terror attack on several military checkpoints in Egypt’s North Sinai and expressed his condolences to President Abdel Fattah El-Sissi, SPA reported. In a cable to El-Sissi, the k...
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman prays inside the historic Quba Mosque in Madinah. The king was accompanied by Prince Muqrin, Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais, head of the Presidency of the Two Holy Mosques and Prince Sultan bin Salman, ch...
JEDDAH: Shop rentals at certain malls have risen by 200 percent, with this cost likely to be passed on to the consumer, the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI) said here recently. Muhammad Al-Shehri, chairman of the JCCI’s textiles and gar...
JEDDAH: People with special needs can now visit a park that has dedicated services for them.Jeddah Mayor Hani Abu Ras opened Al-Erada Park in Al-Salama district on Prince Sultan Street on Thursday.“The Kingdom provides special care for people with di...
JEDDAH: Is involvement in social media the right thing or wrong, particularly in the month of Ramadan? There is a difference of opinion with some arguing that it eats into the time that should be spent praying while some backing it for its religious...
RIYADH: The Argentine government has thanked the Kingdom for previously hosting its Umrah pilgrims for free.“They were part of a group invited by then Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah,” said Ambassador Jaime Sergio Cerda on Thursday.“T...
RIYADH: The Ministry of Education’s counseling department has approved the Rifq Program for the physical and psychological well-being of students.Nabil Mohammad Al-Budair, director of counseling for boys, said the program aims to reduce violence in p...
RIYADH: Sales of fireworks at public markets and main roads in Riyadh have increased during Ramadan, despite the Ministry of Commerce and Industry announcing a SR5,000 reward for anyone providing information about warehouses storing these dangerous i...
RIYADH: The General Organization for Social Insurance (GOSI) has reported that there were 69,241 work-related accidents in 2014, with expatriates making up 65,509 or 94.6 percent and Saudis 3,732.The accidents were in nine sectors with building and c...
JEDDAH: The Health Ministry’s expenditures over the past five years increased from SR29.29 billion to SR53.73 billion, an increase of about 83 percent.According to a study detailing the ministry’s expenditures between 2008 and 2012 issued by the mini...
RIYADH: Five people from the southern Indian state of Kerala were killed in a road accident at Salwa near Dammam in the Eastern Province early Thursday morning.Manoj Kumar, community welfare attache at the Indian Embassy, told Arab News that the vict...
MAKKAH: The government has deployed eight helicopters over Makkah to track the movement of vehicles and people, and assist in security tasks and medical evacuations.Maj. Gen. Mohammad Al-Harbi, commander of the Interior Ministry’s aviation security d...
JAZAN: A Yemeni woman (A.M.) has once again experienced freedom and a renewed sense of hope in life after reuniting with her family last week on her release from Jazan General Prison, where she spent six years on charges of murder of a citizen in the...
RIYADH: A delegation from the Kingdom recently visited the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to explore that country’s successful experience in tourism, in a bid to further develop the sector. Saudi Arabia has been making all-out efforts to promote tourism,...

Stay Connected

Facebook