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Syrian rebels take over Ariha in western Idlib province

ANI  |  London 

Syrian Islamist rebels, which include the country's al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front, have taken over Ariha, one of the last government strongholds in western Idlib province, said activists.

According to BBC, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that the Conquest Army seized the city after a "lightning offensive".

However, intense fighting in the area is still going on, according to the Syrian armed forces.

Since late March, rebels have claimed a number of cities in the province, including Idlib and Jisr al-Shughour.

The head of the al-Nusra Front said that the group has been ordered by al-Qaeda's overall leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri, not to use Syria to launch attacks on the West.

First Published: Fri, May 29 2015. 09:15 IST