Syrian emergency personnel evacuate civilians following a reported airstrike by government forces on April 4, 2014 on the Shaar neighbourhood of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo. AFP PHOTO / ZEIN AL-RIFAI / AMC
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Regime tanks and warplanes pounded besieged Mleiha east of Damascus on Friday, pressing a campaign to take control of the opposition-held town, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.Fierce fighting raged on the outskirts of Mleiha as rebels tried to defend it, the Observatory said a day after 22 opposition fighters were killed in the army's bombardment.According to the Britain-based monitoring group, there were four air strikes on Friday on Mleiha, which like much of the Eastern Ghouta area east of Damascus has been under army siege for nearly six months.Mleiha is strategically located near regime-held Jaramana, which is frequently shelled by the rebels.The army's campaign to crush rebel bastions in the Eastern Ghouta area began in March 2013, and its troops blockaded the area completely in October.
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