Syria’s rebel fighters were preparing for a conclusive battle in Aleppo as President Bashar al-Assad's forces repeated a ground and aerial attack on the country’s second largest city Friday in a bid to crush the opposition fighters. The rebels anticipate large scale offensive today.
Reports suggest that the Syrian pro-government army has been dispatching a series of reinforcement forces towards Aleppo. Meanwhile Washington has warned that Assad’s forces were likely to execute a massacre plan in the city.
The U.S. State Department said reliable sources suggest of tank columns on way to Aleppo besides air strikes on the city, showing a serious growth of Assad's endeavors to crush an uprising that started sixteen months back.
"This is the concern, that we will see a massacre in Aleppo, and that's what the regime appears to be lining up for," State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters in Washington, according to DW. "Our hearts are with the people of Aleppo. And again, this is another desperate attempt by a regime that is going down to try to maintain control, and we are greatly concerned about what they are capable of in Aleppo."
According to security sources, special government troops were installed on the city outskirts, and additional forces have reached the city to participate in a generalized counter-offensive.
According to opposition forces struggling to take control of Aleppo, tens of thousands of pro-government forces were getting ready to attack the city. Aleppo, the scenic northern city near the Turkish border, is already the sight of ferocious combats.
Rebel fighters also augmented their efforts to upset President Bashar al-Assad's command by adding a reinforcement of between 1,500 and 2,000 fighters. Reports suggest that 2,000 rebel fighters are already fighting inside the city.
The population of Aleppo is approximately three million. The Syrian rebel fighters, led by the Free Syrian Army, kicked off an all-out effort to take control of Aleppo on July 20, but afterwards said that the attempt was partly successful. The approach is supposed to be a shot to institute a stranglehold adjacent to the rebel fighter’s command center on the other side of the Turkish border.