Russia says there are no plans to storm Syria's Aleppo | Reuters

MOSCOW There are no plans to storm the Syrian city of Aleppo despite thousands of Al-Nusra militants massing around the city, the Russian military general staff, which is providing air support to the Syrian army, said on Monday.

Fighting between rebels opposed to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and forces loyal to Damascus has flared around Aleppo in recent weeks, threatening a fragile ceasefire in the run-up to the a new round of peace talks on the conflict.

Sergei Rudskoy, head of the Russian General Staff's main operations command, said around 9,500 Al-Nusra fighters had gathered to the south-west and north of Aleppo and were planning a large-scale offensive to cut the city off from the Syrian capital of Damascus.

"All actions of the Syrian military and Russian air force are directed at disrupting the plans of Jabhat al-Nusra. No storming of the city of Aleppo is planned," he said.

Syrian Prime Minister Wael al-Halaki said on Sunday the Russian air force and Syrian military were preparing a joint operation to take full control of Aleppo from rebel forces.

Half of the city, Syria's largest before the war, has been in rebel hands for years.

Syrian media reported a large build-up of troops and equipment by the Syrian army and its allies around Aleppo on Monday, with the pro-Damascus al-Mayadeen TV station reporting it had seen tanks and rocket launchers heading towards the city.

(Reporting by Maria Tsvetkova; Writing by Jack Stubbs; Editing by Andrew Osborn)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.


Updated Date: Apr 12, 2016 01:46 AM

Also Watch

It's A Wrap: Omerta star Rajkummar Rao in conversation with Parul Sharma
  • Thursday, April 26, 2018 In the Kanjarbhat community, a campaign against 'virginity tests' is slowly gaining ground
  • Thursday, April 19, 2018 Watch: National-level skater and coach Dhwanit Rele trains and nurtures budding athletes
  • Monday, May 14, 2018 FOMO Episode 1: Google Assistant, This is America, Sonam's wedding & Global Warming
  • Saturday, May 19, 2018 Social Media Star: Rajkummar Rao and Bhuvan Bam open up about selfie culture, online trolls

Also See