Syrian regime forces on Saturday began operations aimed at retaking Darayya, a suburb located some 8 kilometers southwest of Damascus, according to local sources.
For the last two days, regime forces have prevented aid convoys from entering the area, which was captured by the Syrian opposition in 2012.
Local sources, who spoke to Anadolu Agency anonymously due to fears of reprisal, said that regime reconnaissance planes had recently flown over Darayya followed by artillery barrages – both of which, they said, suggested an imminent ground attack.
The same sources said the Assad regime had recently decided to end a two-and-a-half-month-old ceasefire and had begun amassing troops on Darayya's outskirts.
Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since 2011, when the regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with disproportionate ferocity.