Southern Front rebels have claimed a victory in Syria by capturing a major army base in Deraa province.
If confirmed its fall will be a significant set back for President Bashar al Assad whose forces have suffered a string of defeats in the past three months.
The base which lies outside the town of Harak was one of the main lines of defence for regime forces. It is also near a major road running from the capital Damascus to the Jordanian border.
Although Syrian officials have not commented, it’s believed the government troops have withdrawn to the nearby village of al-Dara.
Pressure is growing on Assad particularly in the south. In April the Southern Front captured the Nasib border crossing with Jordan days after another rebel alliance took the capital of Idlib province.
Meanwhile ISIL militants have made gains taking the central Syrian town and ancient ruins of Palmyra.
The Southern Front is an alliance of rebel groups which had been coordinating operations against the Assad regime from a joint command centre in Jordan. It includes groups that have received some support from foreign states that want to see President Bashar al-Assad gone, including Gulf Arab governments.
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