Syria's army launched an assault on the flashpoint southern city of Daraa Tuesday, state media said, after a week of deadly bombardment on the nearby countryside caused mass displacement.
Government forces opened a new front on Tuesday against the rebel-held part of Deraa city, the provincial capital, state media reported.
Other pro-government media said the army intends to bring the entire province under its control and is likely to move on to western Daraa, where it conducted a series of airstrikes Monday.
Its military has been carrying out strikes on Iranian and Iran-affiliated targets in Syria, with a United States official saying it was Israeli forces that carried out a deadly strike against an Iraqi paramilitary base in eastern Syria on June 17.
Jens Laerke, a spokesman for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, said aid officials were "deeply concerned" for those fleeing the fighting and heading toward the sealed border with Jordan.Читайте также: Harley-Davidson s'apprête-t-il à quitter les USA pour l'Europe?
The United Nations has warned that renewed hostilities could put 750,000 lives in rebel parts of Daraa at risk.
Syria's army is pursuing a divide-and-conquer strategy against rebels in the south, aiming to chop up the horseshoe-shaped territory that the opposition holds. Another six million are displaced inside the country. The United States and Russia, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's most powerful ally, past year agreed a "de-escalation" zone in the area that has helped to contain the violence there. The offensive shattered a truce negotiated in the area by the U.S., Russian Federation and Jordan last July.
Iranian advisers and militias it backs are embedded with Syrian troops.
In a report in the early hours of Tuesday, Syria's state news agency Sana said "two Israeli missiles came down near Damascus global airport".
Syrian and Iranian military facilities in the war-torn country have been hit several times since April. Such strikes have increased in frequency amid soaring tensions between Israel and Iran, a major Assad ally. The Observatory said Israeli jets flew over the Golan Heights and targeted suspected weapons depots for Iranian-backed militias near the Damascus airport. Israel rarely comments on such strikes.При любом использовании материалов сайта и дочерних проектов, гиперссылка на обязательна.
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