Suicide attack stems Assad advance near Syria-Lebanon border

November 20, 2013 18:13

BEIRUT - Two suicide bombers from al-Qaida-linked groups blew themselves up at an army post in the Syrian town of al-Nabak on Wednesday, halting an advance by President Bashar Assad's forces near the Syrian-Lebanese border, activists said.

The battles raging around the Qalamoun range spanning Syria and Lebanon are part of a much-anticipated offensive by Assad's forces to secure a highway linking Damascus to the province of Homs and thus consolidate their grip on central Syria.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said suicide bombers attacked the army checkpoint in explosive-laden cars, killing and wounding several soldiers, but gave no precise toll.

The British-based monitoring group said the blasts coincided with a rebel attack on the nearby government-held town of Deir Attiya, which had not previously been involved in the fighting.

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