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Originally published Saturday, January 12, 2013 at 4:00 AM

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Syrian warplanes bomb rebellious Damascus suburbs

Activists say Syrian fighter jets have bombed Damascus suburbs as part of a government offensive to dislodge rebels from strategic areas around the capital.

The Associated Press

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BEIRUT —

Activists say Syrian fighter jets have bombed Damascus suburbs as part of a government offensive to dislodge rebels from strategic areas around the capital.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says warplanes carried out airstrikes Sunday on towns and villages around the capital, including Kfar Batna and Gesereen, while regime forces bombarded other neighborhoods with artillery and mortars.

The Observatory also says regime troops are battling rebels in the suburb of Daraya a day after government officials said the army had taken much of the strategic area, which lies on the edge of a major military air base just south of the capital. The group relies on reports from activists on the ground.

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