Subscribe Register Login

Monday, December 22, 2014, 8:22 p.m.
Top Picks - Capture Arkansas

Syrian rebels seize key air base, activists say

This article was published January 11, 2013 at 7:05 a.m.

in-this-thursday-jan-10-2013-file-image-taken-from-video-obtained-from-the-shaam-news-network-which-has-been-authenticated-based-on-its-contents-and-other-ap-reporting-smoke-rises-due-to-heavy-shelling-in-taftanaz-idlib-province-northern-syria-syrian-rebels-and-islamic-militants-seeking-to-topple-president-bashar-assad-took-full-control-of-the-taftanaz-air-base-friday-jan-11-in-a-significant-blow-to-government-forces-seizing-helicopters-tanks-and-multiple-rocket-launchers-activists-said

In this Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, file image taken from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, smoke rises due to heavy shelling in Taftanaz, Idlib province, northern Syria. Syrian rebels and Islamic militants seeking to topple President Bashar Assad took full control of the Taftanaz air base Friday, Jan. 11, in a significant blow to government forces, seizing helicopters, tanks and multiple rocket launchers, activists said.

Islamic militants seeking to topple President Bashar Assad took full control of a strategic northwestern air base Friday in a significant blow to government forces, seizing helicopters, tanks and multiple rocket launchers, activists said.

The Taftanaz air base in the northern Idlib province is considered the biggest field in the country’s north for helicopters used to bomb rebel-held areas and deliver supplies to government troops.

Rebels from al-Qaida affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra and other Islamic groups have been fighting for weeks for control of the sprawling facility and broke into it Wednesday evening. Activists said the rebels seized control of buildings, ammunition and military equipment after ferocious fighting at dawn.

“As of now, the rebels are in full control of the air base,” said Idlib-based activist Mohammad Kanaan.

The rebels had been attacking Taftanaz for months, launching a fresh offensive on it in early November. While its fall will dent helicopter operations, it will do little to stop airstrikes by government jets, many of which come from bases farther south.

It is also unclear whether the rebels will be able to retain control of the facility. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which relies on a network of activists on the ground, said government warplanes bombed the air base after the rebel takeover Friday.

Rami Abdul-Rahman, director of the Observatory, said it is the first major military airport to fall into rebel hands.

Read tomorrow's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

Comments on: Syrian rebels seize key air base, activists say

To report abuse or misuse of this area please hit the "Suggest Removal" link in the comment to alert our online managers. Read our Terms of Use policy.

Subscribe Register Login

You must login to make comments.

TOP JOBS

  • Fleet mechanic

    Stallion Transportation is seeking an experienced Class 8 tr...
    BEEBE, AR

  • Therapist

    vantage point of northwest arkansas Is seeking qualified app...
    SPRINGDALE, AR

  • Mlt

    We have recently added more Physicians to our staff so we no...
    STILWELL, Ok

  • Engineer / draftsman

    draftsmanfull time , Adams Fertilizer Equipment, DeWitt Arka...
    DE WITT, AR

  • Sales assistant

    -Needed for women's specialty store. Retail background prefe...
    LITTLE ROCK, AR

Search 681 jobs >

Top Picks - Capture Arkansas
Arkansas Online