ESCALATION

Syria Forces Expand Assault

Bashar al-Assad’s assault continues. In Idlib, a northern rebel stronghold that has been under siege for three days following a similar assault on Baba Amr, Assad’s forces pushed hundreds of military defectors out of a base they’d held for months. Meanwhile, the Arab League condemned Syria’s actions as crimes against humanity, and Human Rights Watch reported that Syrian forces are placing land mines along refugee routes. Amid all the international condemnation, Syria has at least one friend: Russia pledged to continue selling weapons to the regime.