Skip to Content

Residents from Mogambo, Aleppo out in the rain celebrating, France24 video

Residents of Aleppo flood streets to celebrate

Syrians have flooded the streets in celebration after the liberation of Aleppo from Al-Qaeda.

Published: December 13, 2016, 8:48 am

    Read more

    After four years of conflict, authorities said that only three residential blocks remained in the hands of the city’s terrorist groups.

    While an official statement on the situation is yet to emerge from Damascus, a source close to Syrian Army headquarters told RIA Novosti that the army is on the brink of liberating the city.

    The whole area retaken in and around Aleppo is some 18 000 square kilometers, making it a larger area than the whole countries of Qatar or Lebanon.

    Earlier on Monday, the Russian Defense Ministry announced that over 13 000 civilians had been rescued from militant-held parts of eastern Aleppo with the help of the Russian Center for Reconciliation in the past 24 hours.

    But on the French Radio Station, France Culture, the correspondent in Aleppo interviewed a French-speaker on Monday who sees his house for the first time in 5 years. The Syrian is sad to see his abode in very bad shape, but no space is given for any description as to how it may have occured.

    The whole segment was only directed against president Assad’s policies, giving no context to understand the damage that regime change has wrought on the country. The introduction rather mentioned the “danger to the world heritage” because of the actions of the regime in Aleppo and Palmyra, a classical example of “fake news”, prompting some angry listeners to question the influence of Qatari money in France.

    People of Aleppo have meanwhile poured onto the streets to celebrate Syrian army’s victory over Al-Qaeda and imminent end of the battle for their city. Huge amounts of foreign ammunition, food and medicines were found in the quarters the Takfiris retreated from, a blogger Moon of Alabama reported.

    UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon issued a strong statement however expressing his “grave concern” about “atrocities” supposedly perpetrated on civilians, but could give no examples of any such atrocities from the unverified reports.

    “The Secretary-General is alarmed over reports of atrocities against a large number of civilians, including women and children, in recent hours in Aleppo. While stressing that the United Nations is not able to independently verify these reports, the Secretary-General is conveying his grave concern to the relevant parties. He has instructed his Special Envoy for Syria to follow up urgently with the parties concerned.

    “The United Nations underlines the obligation of all parties on the ground to protect civilians and abide by international humanitarian and human rights law. This is particularly the responsibility of the Syrian Government and its allies.”

    The strange statement is all the more unusual as Ban Ki-moon himself admits the claims of “atrocities against a large number of civilians, including women and children” are entirely unverified.

    His aide Jan Egeland has shown no such restraint. Whereas Ban Ki-moon admits the reports of atrocities are unverified, Egeland treats them as facts.

    But Moscow has not minced words. Talks with the United States on Syria are at a “dead end”, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in an appeal directly to the international community to stop Washington’s meddling in Syria.

    Lavrov told Reuters on Monday he believed that Islamic State’s seizure of Palmyra might have been engineered by the US-led coalition to divert attention from Aleppo.

    The ancient, UNESCO-recognized Palmyra had suffered for eight months under Daesh control, during which countless examples of priceless antiquities were deliberately destroyed by the terrorists.

    “That leads us to a thought – and I am sincerely hoping I am wrong, that this is all orchestrated, coordinated to give a break to those bandits that are in eastern Aleppo,” he said. Lavrov’s job does not depend on donations to the Clinton Foundation, which might explain his forthright remarks.

    Unconfirmed reports say that the Syrian army was caught off-guard by the Daesh attack in Palmyra because of communications interference by foreign intelligence services.

    “There are unconfirmed reports that the VHF (Very High Frequency radio spectrum) communications that would have allowed the Syrian army to detect the movement was jammed. One unconfirmed report was that the US air force was jamming the frequency waves between Raqqa and Palmyra,” Rick Sterling, an investigative journalist and member of the Syria Solidarity Movement, told Radio Sputnik.

    It does provide an explanation of how the massive build-up in Palmyra of foreign fighters went undetected by the Syrian armed forces.

    Commenting on the situation in Aleppo, the Director of the University of Oklahoma’s Middle East Studies Center, Joshua Landis, told RT that recapturing Aleppo from the terrorists was “not the end of the war, but a very important turning point”.

    “Aleppo, of course, is the second-largest city in Syria, it’s the last major city that the rebels have a real toehold in. This is comparable, in a sense, to what’s going on in Iraq, where Mosul is under attack, the second largest city of Iraq, and the government forces are pushing out rebels who have occupied that city,” Landis said.

    A priority has been set to move west towards the al-Qaeda occupied Idleb instead of the mostly ISIS occupied east-Syria, as a two front war in the west and east would be too risky and require additional forces.

    karin.bredenkamp@freewestmedia.com

    Keep ​your language polite​. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in​,​ for example​, ​Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.

    If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violation​s​ of​ any​ law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.

    If your comments are subject to preview ​by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.

    We reserve the right to del​ete​ comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.

    Middle East

    Pentagon chief ‘no longer doubts’ Syrian chemical weapons

    Pentagon chief, general James Mattis says there is "no doubt" that Syrian government has chemical weapons.

    MIT weapons expert rubbishes White House paper on Syrian attack

    WashingtonAn American weapons expert from MIT believes the Trump administration’s reason for blaming the Assad government for the April 4 chemical attack in the Idlib province is based on lies.

    Trump warns of escalating Syrian conflict in letter to Congress

    WashingtonDonald Trump has written a letter to the US Congress justifying his attack on Syria. The letter would also appear to indicate that the American president is prepared to escalate the conflict.

    Former UK ambassador says no proof of Syrian gas attack

    The former UK ambassador to Syria, Peter Ford, believes the chemical attack in Syria was a false flag operation.

    US missile attack on Syria ends US-Russian cooperation

    WashingtonThe US has attacked a Syrian air base with about 60 missiles in retaliation for an alleged chemical attack in Idlib, US officials say, but Russian President Putin “regards the strikes as aggression against a sovereign nation”.

    UK, US, France blame Assad for chemical attack in Security Council draft resolution

    New YorkDuring an emergency meeting held by the UN Security Council (UNSC) on Wednesday, the suspected chemical attack in Syria's province of Idlib was blamed on the Syrian government. The United Kingdom, France and the United States introduced a draft resolution in the UNSC stating that the alleged April 4 chemical attack in Idlib was ordered by the Syrian army.

    Syrian government denies chemical attack

    The Syrian Air Force hit a warehouse in Idlib province where chemical weapons were being stockpiled for shipping to Iraq, according to Russia’s Defense Ministry.

    Syrian MP Fares Shehabi: ‘We want Turkey to withdraw its invading forces’

    INTERVIEWToday's Europe is shocked by Erodgan's insults and threats, the latest example being him telling Europeans that they "won't be secure on their streets anymore". Syria's Chairman of the Syrian Federation of the Chambers of Industry and member of the parliament Fares Shehabi explains in an exclusive Free West Media interview why he is not surprised at all by Erodgan's behavior.

    UN under-secretary resigns after Israeli apartheid report

    New YorkA United Nations diplomat had to step down Friday after refusing to withdraw a statement accusing Israel of apartheid against Palestinians.

    US to send Rangers and Marines into Raqqa

    RaqqaThe US has sent 400 additional troops to Syria in support of an effort to capture the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa, the Islamic State's most important urban area in Syria.

    Go to archive