AMMAN - Syrian rebels torched a military barracks which opposition sources said was used as a training grounds for shabbiha militiamen loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad on Friday in Damascus after a two-day siege, a witness said.

"The Saiqa (thunderbolt) barracks is now on fire. About 80 shabbiha and army who have been defending it have withdrawn," Abu Ilizz, a resident of the district adjacent to the Council of Ministers building, said by telephone.

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