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Battle for Aleppo enters third week as Syrian rebels hold on

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Goran Tomasevic/REUTERS

(Read caption) A Free Syrian Army fighter holds his rocket-propelled grenade launcher during a fight with forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in downtown Aleppo August 1.

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• A daily summary of global reports on security issues.

Syrian rebels gained ground today near Aleppo when they turned a captured tank against a Syrian Army airbase. As fighting nears the end of its second week in Syria’s largest city, this increase in rebel artillery could raise morale for a group that is believed to be far outgunned by military forces.

“We hit the airport using a tank that we captured from the Assad army. We attacked the airport a few times but we have decided to retreat at this time," Abu Ali, a rebel fighter, told Reuters.

The United Nations observer mission in Syria says it is concerned about escalating violence in Aleppo, citing the use of jets by President Bashar al-Assad’s regime and the addition of heavier weaponry to the rebels’ cache. Earlier this week NBC News reported that the Free Syrian Army rebel forces acquired nearly 25 surface-to-air missiles via Turkey. 

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