World Bulletin / News Desk
President Bashar al-Assad's forces evacuated two security installations at Albu Kamal on the Iraqi border on Tuesday as rebels made gains in the strategically important area after a week of heavy fighting, opposition sources said.
Security forces withdrew from the Airforce Intelligence and Political Security compounds in the town, 120 kms (75 miles) southeast of the city of Deir al-Zor, activists and a Free Syrian Army official said.
"The regime still has a Military Intelligence compound and Albu Kamal airport. It's a matter of time before the compound falls. The airport is more difficult," Abu Mahmoud, a rebel commander, said by satellite phone from the town.
Muhaimen al-Rumaid, military coordinator for the Syrian Rebel Front said that Albu Kamal had effectively fallen but that Assad's forces were still shelling the town from a border police base several kilometres (miles) away.
Rumaid said the border crossing with Iraq, which Iraqi authorities had closed from their side has been under rebel control for several weeks.
"Controlling Albu Kamal means curbing the regime's supply line from Iraq while improving the logistics of the rebels through an open connection to Iraqi tribes across the border," he said.
Like the rest of the eastern Deir al-Zor province, Albu Kamal is a Sunni Muslim town with family and clan connections to Iraq's Sunni heartland.
Decades long alliances between Syria's ruling elite, who belong to the minority Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shi'ite Islam, and the eastern tribes in Deir al-Zor began collapsing after Assad extended a military crackdown on the protest movement against his rule to the region.
A second national satellite will be launched by Turkmenistan
The little worn path is home to unique geological features and ancient lakes, remnants of the region’s wet period, which ended 4000 years ago.
With its stunning rock formations remnant of a wet period in the region dating back to its ending 4,000 years ago, the Ennedi plateau is seen as a contender for a heritage listing with UNESCO.
Ansar Dine, an armed group based in northern Mali, has claimed responsibility for Friday's attack that killed at least five UN peacekeepers
Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh urges Cairo to open crossing with suffocating Gaza Strip 'on permanent basis'
A Palestinian girl dwho attempted to stab a soldier was killed by Israeli soldiers
A day of violent farmers' protests in Greece blazed on into the night as police fought demonstrators in the capital for the first time over pensions and reforms
'We do need to have peace [in Syria], we need to have negotiations and for that we need to stop bombings against the civilians,' Manuel Valls says
In a statement at the Munich conference, US Secretary of State has said that Russia will continue to face sanctions unless it implement the agreements made at Minsk last year
Medvedev has said the current conditions in the world between Russia and the West are akin to a Cold War.
At least one teen may have fired fatal shots, authorities say
Two loyalists one a local elected member from the ruling CNDD-FDD party and another a member of a youth league have been killed in Burundi
According to interior minister Angelino Alfano, a second autopsy in Italy into the death of the Italian student Gulio Regeni Mr Alfano said the student had suffered 'something inhuman, animal-like, an unacceptable violence.'
A MiG-23 fighter jet of Libya's government has been shot down while carrying out airstrikes against rebel positions in the coastal city of Benghazi.
Venezuela's Supreme Court approved President Nicolas Maduro's "economic emergency" decree on Thursday, which has been seen as an attempt to render the legislative body useless.
First meeting between leaders of Eastern, Western Christianity in 1,000 years