Syrian ceasefire over: Assad, Russian warplanes launch assault to retake Aleppo

Syrian ceasefire over: Assad, Russian warplanes launch assault to retake Aleppo
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Warplanes bombed Aleppo on Friday with what residents described as unprecedented ferocity after the Russian-backed Syrian army announced an offensive to fully capture Syria’s biggest city, killing off any hope of reviving a ceasefire. …

The apparent collapse of U.S.-backed peacemaking may mark a turning point in the 5-1/2-year-old war, with the government and its Russian and Iranian allies now seemingly determined to crush the rebellion in its biggest urban stronghold. …

Ammar al Selmo, the head of Civil Defence, said the rescuers themselves were targeted, with three of their four centres in Aleppo hit.

“What’s happening now is annihilation in every sense of the word,” he told Reuters. “Today the bombardment is more violent, with a larger number of planes.” …

The Syrian army announced overnight that it was launching an operation to recapture the rebel-held sector of the city. On Friday a Syrian military source denied the army was targeting civilians, saying it was accurately targeting “terrorist positions” in Aleppo.

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