DAMASCUS, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- Clashes renewed on Thursday evening at the Jobar suburb in southern part of Syria's capital Damascus, witnesses said, as the state-run SANA news agency said the Syrian troops "purged" the restive suburb from armed insurgency.
The sounds of gunfire and shelling reverberated through the surrounding districts of Jobar, in what appeared to be a decisive battle there, witnesses said.
Meanwhile, SANA said government troops targeted an armed group in the restive neighborhood, killing and injuring most of its members. It later said that Jobar has been cleansed totally of armed "terrorist" groups.
Jobar, alongside other southern suburbs, has emerged as a main stronghold of armed insurgency.
The oppositional Local Coordination Committees also reported the fighting and said "intense clashes between government troops and the rebel Free Syrian Army are taking place in Jobar."
It said government troops used tanks' shells in its offensive.
Meanwhile, SANA said an old man and his 10-year-old grandson were killed in the northern province of Aleppo by a mortar attack unleashed by armed groups at al-Slaimanieh district.
Also in Aleppo, SANA said the authorities released on Thursday 60 people arrested during the unrest whose hands were not smeared with the Syrians' blood.
Earlier in the day, the Syrian government sent text messages to Syrians across the country, calling on those who have resorted to arms and violence to surrender and hand over their weapons because "the game is over."
The message came just one day after the rebels managed to stage two blasts at the Syrian military command headquarters in Damascus, during which four soldiers were killed and 14 others injured.
"Countdown to evict gunmen, who have come in from neighboring countries, has begun," the message said.
The text shows the government's resolve to carry on with fighting insurgency despite the strong blows it has been recently subject to.
NICOSIA, Sept. 27 (Xinhua) -- European defense ministers meeting in Cyprus on Thursday ruled out the possibility of a military intervention in Syria and advocated a political solution to the crisis faced by the country.
"Our aim is to extend our support to the people in the area to build their own democratic institutions, their own democratic societies and democratic states based on human and political rights," said Cypriot Defense Minister Demetris Eliades, who chaired the two-day informal meeting. Full story
DAMASCUS, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- Blasts and clashes rattled Syria on Wednesday and claimed the lives of many people at a time some defected military officers said that carrying guns will not solve the Syrian crisis.
Earlier Wednesday, twin blasts rattled the Syrian military command headquarters in the heart of the Syrian capital of Damascus, the latest brazen attack in a series of violence targeting security and army bases. Full story