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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

Syrian army recaptures key areas from militants

Iran Press TV

Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:32PM GMT

The Syrian army continues mop-up operations against foreign-backed militants on the outskirts of the capital Damascus.

On Sunday, the government troops took over key areas in the suburbs of the city of Adra near Damascus. A large number of militants were killed during the operation.

Since its capture, militants have committed many atrocities against the residents of Adra. They have been involved in a series of kidnappings and executions, especially targeting religious minority groups in the city over the past few days.

The Syrian army has been fighting against the militants for several weeks to secure the areas near Damascus.

It has recently conducted successful clean-up operations across the country, inflicting heavy losses on the militants.

A recent British defense study showed that about 100,000 militants, fragmented into 1,000 groups, are fighting in Syria against the government and people.

The extracts of the study by defense consultancy IHS Jane's were published on September 16.

IHS Jane's estimates that some 10,000 militants are fighting for groups affiliated with al-Qaeda such as the al-Nusra Front and the rest fight for different militant groups.

The analysis also said that a large number of extremists from foreign countries are also active in Syria.

Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since March 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside Syria.

According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and a total of 7.8 million of others displaced due to the violence.

GJH/HN/AS



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