Dec 22 - Free Syrian Army fighters say they will soon be in control of the country's largest city. Rough cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT - NO REPORTER NARRATION Free Syrian Army fighters say government forces are losing the battle for control of the nation's largest city, Aleppo. The extended battle has left large parts of the city in ruins. The rebels already control many districts in Aleppo since launching a campaign in the summer, and most of the countryside surrounding it is also in rebel hands. Civilians in such areas are facing huge hardship with constant shortages of food. Rebels and the government have traded blame for the lack of help to opposition-held areas where clashes regularly rage. Syrian rebels warned on Friday they would target Aleppo's international airport after firing at an airliner preparing to take off, the first direct attack on a civilian flight in the 21-month-old revolt. The rebels accuse the government of using civilian aircraft to transport weapons and fighters they say are helping the forces of President Bashar al-Assad.