Reuters reports: Syrian government forces have captured a northern town located near a chemical weapons site after days of heavy fighting, state media and a monitoring group said on Friday.
The town, Safira, is also located on a road that could be used to relieve government-controlled areas of Aleppo, Syria’s commercial hub.
Syrian state television said government forces had taken full control of the town, which had been occupied by rebels, including some from units linked to al Qaeda.
The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the government had seized the town on Friday morning after more than three weeks of fighting.
The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which has teams in Syria to eliminate the country’s chemical weapons arsenal, has said its teams were unable to reach two sites for inspection because they were too dangerous.
A source briefed on their operations said one of those sites was at Safira, which is southeast of Aleppo.
The chemical weapons site itself has been under government control but emptied of equipment because of fighting nearby, according to the OPCW.