Pro-Assad forces regain rebel Syrian town-agency

AMMAN Sat Oct 1, 2011 4:33pm EDT

AMMAN Oct 1 (Reuters) - Syrian troops entered the central town of Rastan, the official news agency said on Saturday, after the most prolonged fighting between the army and insurgents in the-six month uprising.

"Calm and security have returned to Rastan after security police backed by army units entered the town and confronted the terrorist groups who have terrified its inhabitants," the agency said.

The town, scene of large protests demanding the removal of President Bashar al-Assad, had been under the control of army defectors and other insurgents in the last few weeks. Government forces, backed by tanks and helicopters, moved on the town of 40,000, which lies 180 km (110 miles) north of Damascus on the main highway to Aleppo, on Tuesday. (Reporting by Khaled Yacoub Oweis, Amman newsroom)

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