Russia asks its citizens to leave Syria / The end of the Affair ?

Syrian Revolution News Round- up / Day 624 – Rebels push into Damascus

The rebels seized control of the town of Karama, 35-km east of Raqa city in the north of the country after pushing the security forces out of it. They also stormed the 666th air defence base in the Damascus suburb of Sayeda Zeinab in addition to a missile-base in the Aleppo suburb of Safeira as well as an artillery base in the southern Daraa suburb of Sahwa.

The rebels shot down a fighter jet near the 35th regiment in the East Ghouta district of Damascus province as well as a helicopter gunship in the western suburb of Aleppo using a shoulder-mounted surface-to-air missile for the first time.  

In Damascus, heavy fighting erupted in the vicinity of Damascus international airport as well as in the neighbourhood of Kafarsouseh. The rebels attacked a checkpoint in the neighbourhood of Ruken al-Din and ambushed a military convoy near the Panorama area killing and injuring dozens of soldiers and militiamen. They also destroyed eight military tanks as they continued to repel the regime’s ground assault on the provincial town of Daraya. The Russian embassy in Damascus is encouraging Russian citizens to leave Syria and will offer its help to facilitate their departure, Italy-based online news outlet Aki cited sources from Damascus. The source added that the Russian government won’t offer any further assistance to its citizens and their family members upon arrival to Russia.

Regime forces committed another massacre that claimed the lives of more than 11 children and left more than 24 people wounded when it bombed the village of Fayziya in the suburb of Homs. A fighter jet fired cluster bombs on an olive oil press packed with farmers in the village of Ain Sheib in the suburb of Idlib killing at least 20 and injuring 50 others.

At least 49 people were killed in Damascus and its suburbs due to the violent and indiscriminate shelling in the neighbourhoods of Jobar, Qabun and Kafarsouseh as well as in the provincial towns of Otayba, Douma, Moadamiya, Daraya, Bahdaliya and Husainiya refugee camp.  

Regime forces stepped attacks on opposition areas throughout the country, shelling as many as 286 different areas today, mainly in Damascus, Aleppo, Homs and Idlib. They fired mortar shells on more than 70 areas while their heavy artillery pounded more than 176 others. Some 40 areas came under rocket shelling and five more were bombarded by barrel bombs. Fighter jets bombarded more than 16 areas of which six were shelled by cluster bombs thus causing extensive damage to residential buildings and leaving scores of people dead and injured.

Today’s death toll reached 130, including 20 children and 13 women as well as 24 rebel fighters. At least 50 people were also injured.  

Three Syria children were reported dead during the past three days in the Syrian refugee camp of Zaatari in Jordan. Activists blamed their death on the severe cold weather and lack of heating equipment in camp, while the camp’s management said the children died due to chronic diseases they had before arriving into the camp. Activists said that the regime is dismantling the cellular network in Aleppo thus leaving some areas completely out of coverage. Prices of consumer commodities increased by 35% – 65% since the beginning of year 2012, due to the fluctuating exchange rate and the escalating violence in the country according to a regime official. Syria’s inflation rate recorded a new height in August to stand at 39.50% on an annual basis.