Syrian army makes advances in key city of Aleppo
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The Syrian army has gained more ground in the battle against foreign-backed militants in the northern city of Aleppo. On Sunday, the army managed to seize control of most of the Karam al-Turab district in eastern Aleppo. Syrian troops have also launched mop-up operations to take control of several eastern and northern districts in a bid to recapture large swathes of the city. In recent weeks, the Syrian army has made major advances in its fight against the armed groups. Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside Syria. The UN has said that more than 100,000 people have been killed and millions displaced so far due to the turmoil in the country. The UN said earlier that more than four million Syrians will be forced out of their homes in 2014 by the escalating conflict in the country. A British defense study published in September last year by IHS Jane's showed that about 100,000 militants, fragmented into 1,000 groups, are fighting in Syria against the government and people.