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Syrian rebels capture army base in Deir al-Zor, further weakening his control in the strategic region bordering Iraq

Last modified: 22 Nov 2012 20:08

Syrian rebels have captured an army base in the eastern province of Deir al-Zor, striking another blow against President Bashar al-Assad's military and further weakening his control in the strategic region bordering Iraq.

Thursday’s capture of the artillery base on the outskirts of Mayadeen, a town on the Euphrates river near some of Syria's main oilfields, follows rebel takeovers of military installations in the north and centre of the country this week.

"The Mayadeen military base fell at 8:30 am (0630 GMT)," Abu Laila, an official in the Military Revolutionary Council in the province, told Reuters. He said 44 rebel fighters had been killed in the siege of the base.

"The whole countryside, from the Iraqi border and along the Euphrates to the city of Deir al-Zor, is now under rebel control." Another opposition source in contact with rebels confirmed that the base, 42 km south-east of the city of Deir al-Zor, had fallen.