Ansar Al-Sham Brigade fighters fire their weapons towards warplanes loyal to Syria's President Bashar Assad, activists said, near Jisr al-Shoghour, Idlib province March 25, 2015. REUTERS/Mohamad Bayoush
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An alliance of Syrian Islamist rebels including Al-Qaeda's Nusra Front have overrun 17 defense posts around Idlib in an offensive to take the city from the army and allied militia, an activist group said Thursday.The army controls the city of at least 100,000 people and rebels are stationed on the outskirts.It said 11 soldiers and allied militia as well as 17 insurgents were killed Wednesday and violent clashes continued Thursday.State television said the army foiled an attempt by terrorists to enter the city, citing a military source.
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