Air strikes resume on Damascus water-source valley

- Reuters, BEIRUT

Jan 9, 2017-

Air strikes resumed on Sunday in a rebel-held valley near Damascus containing the Syrian capital’s main water supply, a day after insurgents and the government failed to agree a plan to repair the springs knocked out of service two weeks ago.

The government and allied fighters from the Lebanese group Hezbollah launched an offensive two weeks ago to take back Wadi Barada, a mountainous valley 

overlooked by pro-government military positions where springs provided water to 

four million people in the 

capital.

The government says it wants to enter the rugged valley to permanently secure water supply to the capital. Rebels and local activists say pro-government forces are using the water issue to score a political victory weeks 

after the fall of Aleppo city, using siege and bombardment to force fighters into agreeing to leave.

Through a series of so-called settlement agreements, sieges and army 

offensives, the Syrian government, backed by Russian air power and Iran-backed militias, has been steadily suppressing armed opposition around the capital.

Published: 09-01-2017 10:38

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