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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

Last updated on: August 9, 2012 10:39 IST

IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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Syrian President Bashar al Assad's forces are currently engaged in a 'savage and barbaric assault' on rebels who are pulling back from their stronghold Alleppo -- the commercial hub and largest city in the country.

The Syrian army has claimed that it is back in control of the besieged district, a rebel stronghold, but the Syrian Observatory said the intense fighting was continuing.

The official Sananews agency claimed Assad regime forces had fully regained control on Salaheddine -- the main rebel stronghold in the northern city. Syrian State TV said its armed forces killed and captured "terrorists," including "mercenaries who are non-Syrian nationals."

"The struggle for Aleppo is a key fight in the conflict, which morphed into a nationwide uprising and civil war after government forces cracked down on peaceful protesters in March 2011," CNN reported.

Roughly 17,000 people have been killed since the Syrian conflict began, the United Nations said last month. The opposition has put the toll at more than 20,000.

At least 37 people -- 17 civilians, 10 rebels and 10 soldiers -- were killed in Aleppo on Wednesday, out of a total of at least 162 people killed across the country, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Aleppo, the largest city in Syria and its commercial centre, holds great symbolic and strategic importance. Around 25 miles from the Turkish border, it has been a pillar of regime support during the uprising.

There has been a marked increase in the number of refugees fleeing to Turkey in the past two days as Aleppo-based activists reported fresh clashes, reports stated.

Rediff.com brings forth some photographs of the latest violence in civil-war torn Aleppo.

In this picture, a Free Syrian Army fighter takes cover during clashes with Syrian army in the Salaheddine neighbourhood of central Aleppo on Wednesday.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A Free Syrian Army fighter screams in pain after he was injured in a leg by shrapnel from a shell fired from a Syrian army tank in the Salaheddine neighbourhood of central Aleppo on Tuesday.  

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A Free Syrian Army fighter reacts after his friend was shot by Syrian army soldiers during clashes in Salah al-Din neighbourhood in central Aleppo.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A boy plays with an AK-47 rifle owned by his father in Azaz, north of Aleppo.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters
Tags: AK-47 , Syria , Azaz , Aleppo

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A sniper from the Free Syrian Army takes position in Aleppo.

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Photographs: Obeida Al Naimi/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A Free Syrian Army member walks at a checkpoint on the outskirts of Aleppo.

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Photographs: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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Free Syrian Army members place frozen water bottles on the bodies of civilians killed by shelling, to prevent rapid decomposition, in Aleppo.

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Photographs: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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Members of Free Syrian Army stand with their injured comrade after evacuating him from Aleppo on the outskirts of Idlib province.

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Photographs: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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Smoke rises over the Salah al-Din neighbourhood in central Aleppo during clashes between Free Syrian Army fighters and Syrian army soldiers.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A Free Syrian Army fighter walks through dust and smoke after Syrian army tank shell exploded in the Salah al- Din neighbourhood of central Aleppo.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A member of the Free Syrian Army carries an injured civilian after shelling by forces loyal to President Bashar Al-Assad in Aleppo's district of Salah Edinne.

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Photographs: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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Free Syrian Army members interrogate a man who was arrested while stealing from vacant houses in Aleppo.

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Photographs: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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The body of a civilian, who was killed during clashes between Free Syrian Army fighters and Syrian army soldiers, lies on a street in Salah al-Din neighbourhood in central Aleppo.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters
Tags: , Syria , Salah , Aleppo

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A woman carries her child while walking through the rubble in Attarib, on the outskirts of Aleppo province.

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Photographs: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters
Tags: , Syria , Attarib , Aleppo

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A woman walks through rubble from a building destroyed by shelling from forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in downtown Aleppo.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A building burns after shelling at Aleppo's district of al Sukkari.  

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Photographs: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters
Tags: , Syria , Sukkari , Aleppo

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A woman stands in a balcony after hearing shelling in Aleppo.

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Photographs: Zohra Bensemra/Reuters
Tags: , Syria , Aleppo

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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Free Syrian Army fighters shout in the Salah al- Din neighbourhood of central Aleppo.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters
Tags: , Aleppo , Army , Syria , Salah

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A boy climbs onto a destroyed Syrian army tank in front of a mosque destroyed during clashes in Azaz, north of Aleppo.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters
Tags: , Syria , Azaz , Aleppo

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IN PHOTOS: Bloody battle for Syria's largest city

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A young Free Syrian Army fighter rests on a school bench in a street in downtown Aleppo. Behind him the graffiti reads "Ihsan Sadiq fighting group, Amr bin al-Aas brigade of the Free North."

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

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A member of the Free Syrian Army flashes the victory sign on a captured tank after taking control of a checkpoint from government forces in Anadan, north Aleppo.

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Photographs: Obeida Al Naimi/Reuters

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A man looks at a building damaged by a tank shell fired by the Syrian army the night before, in central Aleppo.

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Photographs: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters
Tags: , Aleppo , Syria

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