Syrian regime advances fast on rebels in south

Syrian regime advances fast on rebels in south

Amman/Beirut: Syrian government forces widened their offensive in the country's southwest on Sunday to Quneitra province, a region adjoining the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, a war monitor and rebel sources said.

It comes after a week of heavy artillery shelling and air strikes from Syrian and Russian forces on Nawa, according to the United Kingdom based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR).

The Syrian army, with the support of Russian forces, captured most of Daraa since launching a major offensive last month.

The station said the evacuation of almost 1,000 people will likely be completed by Sunday. In what was likely interpreted as a warning by Hamas, Israeli forces recently held war games in which they practiced an assault on Gaza City. As negotiations for ceasefire and reconciliation continue, the Syrian government appears to be putting pressure on rebel holdouts in the region.

Almost 7,000 residents from two villages are being evacuated in Syria.

Both Israel and Jordan have said they would not allow Syrians to cross into their territories.

By controlling western Daraa's imposing mountaintops, the pro-government forces are effectively isolating rebel positions by using machine gun fire and artillery strikes to cut off the roadways connecting them, the commander added. Thomas said Israel is now the "last lifeline of Syrians suffering", in a video posted online Saturday.

Ahmad Masalmeh, a media activist formerly based in the southern city, says fighters have the option of accepting an offer of amnesty from the government, or leaving Daraa with their families to other rebel-held parts of the country.

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The International Rescue Committee said the government's advance has trapped tens of thousands of displaced Syrians along the frontier with the Golan Heights, which Israel occupied in 1967.

"We now are working on the logistical arrangements", said an Islamist rebel source familiar with the secret negotiations that Turkey was also involved in. "Get a move on", to the large groups of people coming from Syria.

Hundreds of thousands of Syrians have already been displaced by recent fighting.

The vehicles were parked on a main thoroughfare connecting the city's government-held north with its rebel-held south.

"Assad is reconquering the country, the world has seen Russian Federation stand by its ally and bolster its prestige, and Russian Federation also has secured permanent naval/air bases - all at relatively little cost to itself".

Khaled Solh, head of the local Syrian civil defence known as White Helmets, said only one ambulance was able to access the town and civilians relied on their cars to bring out at least 150 injured.

"However, if Iran and Israel get into a full-blown war that potentially threatens the Assad regime and/or forces Russian Federation to get involved", then this could jeopardize that situation, he said.

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