Fighting in Syria Intensifies as Iran Holds Peace Conference
As Iran hosted international envoys to the Iranian capital of Tehran, to discuss ways to end the conflict in Syria, Syrian forces pummeled the commercial capital of Aleppo today.
Government forces attacked from the air to drive rebel forces from the southern parts of the capital. There are reports of heavy fighting in the Salaheddin district of the city as the Syrian forces bombarded the area with bombs as well as shelled the neighborhood prior to troops moving in to retake large portions of the southern part of the city according to Syrian TV.
As the rebels run low on weapons and munitions, the government troops have moved into the area with newer T-82 tanks.
The government of Syria is opening up on other fronts as well, there are reports of shelling in Homs, Rastan, Deir Ezzor, and smaller towns near Daraa.
Rebel commander Malek al Kurdi has put the call out for aid from the international community. "We had wanted an active role from the international community to take a bold decision to stop the massacres in Syria," he said. "But the delay and the modest capabilities of the Free Syrian Army has put the Syrian situation in a state of limbo."
"This has opened the way for extremist groups from different places with goals separate from the Syrian people to get financial support to continue the revolution," he said.
In Iran, just short of thirty nations attended the peace initiative held in Tehran. Among those in attendance was Russia,China, Turkey, India, Iraq as well as many of the Latin American countries. All other western and arab nations either weren't invited or refused their invitations. The initiative, on behalf of Syria's long-time ally, comes at a time that Syria's Assad's position in his country is weakening and his future is in doubt.
Meanwhile, on other fronts, many of the nations in the international community are stepping up with humanitarian aid for the displaced refugees that have fled the conflict in Syria. Also, France is flying 25 medical personnel and 20 tons of equipment to neighboring Jordon to set up a medical mission for refugees that have crossed the border into that country.
According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, at least 20,000 people have died in the Syrian conflict.