DAMASCUS, March 1 (Xinhua) -- Clashes continued Friday between government troops and rebel fighters at the vicinity of a police academy and military airbase in Syria's northern province of Aleppo, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
The Observatory said three rebels were killed in the clashes that erupted Friday at Khan al-Asal town in Aleppo, adding that the clashes raged on in the vicinity of the police academy in the town.
Fresh fighting also took place near al-Nairab airbase, which is also close to the international airport of Aleppo, the Observatory said.
The state-run SANA said army troops clashed Friday with a " terrorist" group that tried to attack the police academy in Khan al-Asal and killed scores of them and destroyed five cars with all weapons and ammunition in them.
The rebels have been trying since last month to storm the academy and the Nairab base in the hope of stripping the regime forces from their base of power in that northern part of the country.
Meanwhile, Syria's state media denied on Friday reports that the rebels have downed a military jet in Aleppo.
Citing unnamed source in the city, the state-TV said the opposition reports about the war jet is totally false and "their aim has become well known."
Anti-Syrian government media claimed that the rebels downed a war jet in Aleppo and another one in central Hama province on Friday. Rebels have previously downed several war jets and gunfighters in a number of hotspots nationwide. The Syrian government, however, denied most of those reports.
Violence has intensified in Syria recently in what some observers described as the escalation before pacification that is expected after the international community declared support to the political solution to Syria's long-standing conflict.
A recent UN tally placed the overall death toll of Syria's 23- month conflict at more than 70,000 people.