AMMAN Nov 22 Syrian rebels claimed to have
captured an army artillery base in the eastern oil producing
province of Deir al-Zor on Thursday, weakening President Bashar
al-Assad's control of the strategic region bordering Iraq.
"After 20 days and 44 martyrs, the Mayadeen military base
fell at 8.30 a.m. (0630 GMT). The whole countryside, from the
Iraqi border and along the Euphrates to the city of Deir al-Zor,
is now under rebel control," Abu Laila, an official in the
Military Revolutionary Council in the province, told Reuters.
Another opposition source in contact with rebels confirmed
that the base, 42 km (26 miles) south-east of the city of Deir
al-Zor, had fallen "after a long siege".