Thousands of Iranian troops ‘arrive in Syria’ for Aleppo offensive

Thousands of Iranian troops have arrived in Syria to join the regime’s military forces and Hizbollah allies to launch a ground attack against insurgents in Aleppo, two senior regional officials have said.

Control of Aleppo city and the surrounding province in the area near the Turkish border is divided among the Syrian government, insurgent groups fighting Syrian president Bashar al-Assad and Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) that controls some rural areas near the city.

“The big battle preparations in that area are clear,” one of the officials told Reuters news agency. “There is a large mobilisation of the Syrian army … elite Hizbollah fighters, and thousands of Iranians who arrived in stages in recent days.”

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