Several new amateur videos that Reuters cannot verify purport to show Syrian government forces escalating their assault on the rebel-held district of Jobar in the eastern outskirts of the the capital. Mana Rabiee reports.
Plumes of smoke rise across the Damascus skyline. The latest in several days of fierce aerial bombardment on this area of the Syrian capital, according to activists and rights groups and this video that Reuters can't independently verify. The activists say the rebel stronghold of Jobar -- in the eastern outskirts of the city -- has been pounded by airstrikes, nearly 30 yesterday alone. The government of President Bashar al Assad is trying to retake Jobar after it captured several rebel-held areas around the city center earlier this summer. Other amateur video claims to show a rebel tank moving through Jobar the day before. The rebels say this water tank was used by government forces as a sniper position. In their three-year-long struggle to topple Assad, rebels haven't been able to take central Damascus But the government is worried they'll reach the center of the capital by digging tunnels, from outlying suburbs that are under their control, just like Jobar.