Syria rebels take down regime helicopter near Israel border
George OURFALIAN (AFP/File)
Rebels shot down a Syrian regime helicopter on Friday in a southwestern region near the borders with Israel and Lebanon, killing its three crew, a monitoring group said.
"Rebel groups shot down a regime helicopter with a guided missile near the border with Lebanon and the (Israeli-) occupied Golan," said the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights chief Rami Abdel Rahman.
During the Six Day War, 1967, Israel captured the Golan Heights from Syria with the area now coming under Israeli law.
Rahman told AFP that three officers on board were killed, after initially reporting two deaths.
The area where the helicopter was taken down is an enclave controlled by Islamist rebel and jihadist groups but surrounded by regime forces.
Abdel Rahman said fighting has increased there since October.
More than 340,000 people are estimated to have been killed in the Syrian war, which began in 2011 as the regime brutally crushed anti-government protests. Millions have been displaced.
As the Geneva peace talks stall due to disagreements regarding President Bashar al-Assad's role in a future interim government, a settlement to the longstanding conflict appears increasingly distant.
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