Assad, Hezbollah Retake Rebel City

SANA, via AP

This Wednesday, April 24, 2013 photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows two Syrian Army soldiers aiming their weapons, in Otaybah town, east of Damascus, Syria.

Hezbollah fighters joined with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces on Sunday to take back large swaths of Qusayr, a border city in Homs Province controlled by rebel fighters. The Syrian military pounded the city with air and artillery strikes, leaving 52 dead and injuring hundreds. Anti-government activists estimated regime loyalists took back roughly 60 percent of the city. It was a significant win for Assad, who believes the area is key to regaining control over rebel-held territories. Hezbollah’s role in the conflict has escalated recently, raising fears that the war may soon spread beyond Syria’s borders.