Syrian rebel bastion of Yabroud falls to government-Hizballah forces
Syrian state media reported Sunday that government forces backed by Hizballah had taken full control of the rebel stronghold of Yabroud, the key to the Calamoun mountain range after a more than four-month battle. Rebel fighters are reported to have fled the town at dawn. The fall of Yabroud (pop: 40-60,000) secures Bashar Assad’s land route from Damascus to Aleppo and the Mediterranean coastal cities, and cuts off the main rebel supply route from Lebanon. Syrian state TV said government forces had killed or captured many rebels.