People attend a protest carrying Free Syrian Army flags while burning tyres, which they said are used to create smoke cover from warplanes, in Aleppo, Syria July 31, 2016. REUTERS/Abdalrhman Ismail
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Syrian rebel fighters have launched a major assault on government-held southwestern parts of Aleppo to try to reopen supply lines into opposition-held areas of the city after the army and its allies tightened their siege last week.A rebel military command center that includes the newly formed Islamist group Jabhat Fatah al Sham, formerly the al Qaeda-linked Nusra Front, Ahrar al Sham and Free Syrian Army (FSA) brigades said they had seized army positions and some residential compounds in the first few hours of the assault, which began on Sunday night.Later, rebels said they had captured the strategic al-Mishrefah area, south of the Ramousah air force artillery base, which has been used to pound rebel-held areas from its fortified hilltop position.
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