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Middle East

Assad replies to Syria ceasefire call with air strikes


Regime warplanes struck a strategic rebel-held town in the north yesterday in an attempt to reopen a key supply route, activists said, as a UN-proposed ceasefire appeared increasingly unlikely to take hold.

Lakhdar Brahimi, the UN-Arab League envoy, has suggested that both sides lay down their arms during Eid al-Adha, a four-day holiday that begins on Friday. But neither President Bashar al-Assad nor rebels fighting to topple him have committed to a truce.