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Syria Live Coverage: Civilian Deaths in Aleppo

The destruction in the Al-Bab section of Aleppo

See also Palestine (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Conflicting Claims Over Palestinian Who Died in Israeli Custody
Saturday's Syria Live Coverage: Opposition Boycotts International Talks Over Aleppo Deaths

1816 GMT: Regime Strike. At the end of this clip, a direct hit on an insurgent truck with an anti-aircraft gun in Khan al-Asal in Aleppo Province:

1802 GMT: "Liberation". Claimed footage of residents of Jasim in Daraa Province celebrating "liberation" by opposition forces, including the defacing of regime posters:

1728 GMT: Insurgent Advance. Insurgents have captured the Al-Kubar site, suspected of hosting a nuclear reactor which Israeli warplanes destroyed six years ago, according to opposition sources.

Al-Kubar is near the Euphrates river, about 60 kilometres (35 miles) west of the city of Deir Ez Zor.

Omar Abu Laila. a spokesman for the Eastern Joint Command of the Free Syrian Army, said the only building on the site was a hangar containing at least one SCUD missile: "It appears that the site was turned into a Scud launch base. Whatever structures it had have been buried."

Abu Laila said three army helicopters airlifted the last regime troops before opposition fighters overran the area on Friday.

The opposition fighter said SCUDs appear to have been fired from Kubar at rebel-held areas in the province of Homs to the west. He claimed the complex had command-and-control links with regime troops in the city of Deir Ez Zor.

1618 GMT: Death of a Journalist. French freelance photographer Olivier Voisin, seriously wounded on Thursday, has died after surgery in Turkey.

Voisin suffered head and arm injuries from shrapnel when a shell exploded near Idlib in northern Syria.

1418 GMT: Insurgent Attacks. Reports are circulating that insurgents have attacked regime positions, including a government complex housing a police academy, in western Aleppo. The regime reportedly responded with airstrikes to defend the complex, which includes several smaller army outposts in charge of protecting the academy.

Claimed footage of opposition fighters preparing for an operation:

1415 GMT: A Shell in Turkey. A mortar shell fired from Syria fell in Hatay Province in southern Turkey on Saturday night. No casualties were reported.

The mortar shell fell in a fruit garden in the village of Aşağıpulluyazı, shattering the windows of several houses and causing a large crater.

1115 GMT: Protest in Lebanon. Hundreds of mainly-Sunni protesters launched a sit-in Saturday on the main road linking Beirut to Damascus, blocking the passage of fuel tankers with supplies for Syrian regime forces.

The demonstration, organised by the Association of Muslim Scholars, was staged in the eastern Bekaa Valley.

About 15 trucks were forced to turn back to Beirut by an estimated crowd of about 300 people, around 20 of whom were Sunni Muslim sheikhs or clergymen.

"We are warning the Lebanese state ... We as Sunni Muslims believe these tankers carry the fuse to ignite sectarian conflict," in Lebanon, said Sheikh Yehia Al-Baridi, one of the protest organisers.

On 13 February, dozens of protesters cut off two northern border crossings to protest diesel fuel transfers to the Assad regime.

1051 GMT: Death in Lebanon. One person has reportedly been killed and one injured when shells from the Syrian conflict hit the Lebanese town of al-Hisheh.

Clashes were reported overnight on the Lebanese-Syrian borders between the Syrian army and insurgents, with artillery, mortars, and machine guns used.

0727 GMT: Weapons. The Washington Post discovers the story --- revealed by EA's James Miller last month, building on work by Eliot Higgins --- "In Syria, New Influx of Weapons to Rebels Tilts the Battle against Assad":

A surge of rebel advances in Syria is being fueled at least in part by an influx of heavy weaponry in a renewed effort by outside powers to arm moderates in the Free Syrian Army, according to Arab and rebel officials.

The new armaments, including anti-tank weapons and recoilless rifles, have been sent across the Jordanian border into the province of Daraa in recent weeks to counter the growing influence of Islamist extremist groups in the north of Syria by boosting more moderate groups fighting in the south, the officials say.

The officials declined to identify the source of the newly provided weapons, but they noted that the countries most closely involved in supporting the rebels’ campaign to oust Assad have grown increasingly alarmed at the soaring influence of Islamists over the fragmented rebel movement. They include the United States and its major European allies, along with Turkey and the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia and Qatar, the two countries most directly involved in supplying the rebels. Security officials from those nations have formed a security coordination committee that consults regularly on events in Syria, they said.

See Syria Analysis: A New Insurgent Alliance --- With New Weapons --- Is Changing the War

0712 GMT: Aleppo. Saturday's headlines were taken up by the continuing images of destruction and civilian deaths in Syria's largest city, in a military stalemate since insurgents entered last July.

Although civilians have died at the hands of both sides, the story took a new turn this week with an apparent escalation --- in number and in size --- of regime  rocket and missile strikes. Pictures and videos of devastations testified to Friday's deadly attacks, which destroyed a number of houses, and the casualties continued yesterday.

The Local Coordination Committees reported that, among 148 deaths across Syria on Saturday, 74 were in Aleppo Province while 40 were in Damascus and it suburbs.

The rise in civilian deaths from airstrikes appeared to be reflected in the LCC's claim of 35 children and nine women slain.

The opposition Syrian National Coalition said Friday that it will boycott forthcoming international meetings because "hundreds of civilians have been killed by Scud missile strikes. Aleppo, the city and the civilisation, is being destroyed systematically".

Coalition head Moaz al-Khatabi reinforced the message yesterday, declaring that he was sending out "a message of protest to all governments of the world, Arab and non-Arab, that can see how the Syrian people are being killed, while they  merely look on".

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