Syrian television says that government forces have taken almost full control of a town just outside Damascus from Islamist rebels, who had held it for more than a year. Vanessa Johnston reports.
(Natsot - fighting) Fierce fighting in the streets of Mleiha, near Damascus... Syrian state television says government forces are close to re-taking the town from Islamist rebels. (Natsot - fighting) Mleiha has been used as a base for the rebel fighters to bombard the capital with mortars in Syria's civil war. Video posted to a social media website purports to show Syrian forces sweeping through the town. It cannot be independently verified by Reuters. Another video appears to show warplanes dropping bombs on targets decribed as the rebels' last points of resistance. With help from Lebanon's Hezbollah, government forces have pushed the rebels back from around Damascus. Yet more rebel-held territory has fallen to the group known as Islamic State. This video purports to show clashes between Islamic State fighters and the Free Syrian Army in the city of Aleppo, the latest battle in a war that has lasted three years and left more than 150,000 people dead.