Syrian Army Takes Over Rebel Stronghold in Aleppo
(ALEPPO, Syria) -- Syrian opposition forces have lost a key section of the country's largest city of Aleppo in what could be the make-or-break battle of the 18-month-long civil war.
Members of the Free Syrian Army acknowledged on Thursday that the military had overrun the Saleh al-Din district and that they were now in retreat.
This is the most significant loss of turf yet for the rebels in Aleppo, the commercial hub of Syria.
State-run media in Damascus confirmed that forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad had won their battle against hundreds of "terrorist mercenaries."
The military has stepped up its bombardment of enemy targets in Aleppo, which rebels first entered more than three weeks ago to much fanfare. Hundreds of thousands of civilians have since fled the fighting, while humanitarian groups say those still trapped inside the city are running out of food, water and other necessary supplies.
Despite the army's victory in Salah al-Din, the rebels still control other districts of Aleppo, especially in the eastern part of the city.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio