http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/357624

Syrian army capture strategic northern town

Posted Sep 3, 2013 by Sami Zaatari
The Syrian army has managed to capture the northern town of Ariha after heavy fighting. The recent gain by the Syrian army comes amidst a possible western led strike on the Syrian government in response to it's alleged role in using chemical weapons.
Bashar Hafez al-Assad is the President of Syria and Regional Secretary of the Syrian-led branch of t...
Bashar Hafez al-Assad is the President of Syria and Regional Secretary of the Syrian-led branch of the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party
Pan Armenian Photo
But even as the threat of a western strike looms, fighting on the ground between both sides continues, as the Syrian army continues to try and wrest control away from the opposition.
The northern town of Ariha holds strategic significance as it's located along a major highway linking the coastal province of Latakia, with that of Idlib province. Capturing the town would allow Assad's forces to open supply routes into Idlib, where rebels control most of the territory.
Some activists in the area reporting on the fighting said that the town was still not under Assad's full control, but would eventually fall to Assad's troops who have the superior firepower.
Activists reported heavy army shelling, as well as the use of air power against rebel positions in the town, with ground soldiers then moving in to capture rebel areas.
The Syrian opposition meanwhile have warned of possible chemical attacks to be carried out by the Syrian army. Speaking from Istanbul, SNC (Syrian National Coalition) Spokesman Khalid Saleh told reporters that 3 military convoys containing chemical weapons were being moved near the southern city of Deraa, with two of the convoys reaching their destination.
The opposition based their claims according to information they managed to obtain from informants inside the Syrian army and government.