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The Free Syrian Army, one of Syria’s armed rebel forces, has confirmed the capture of a strategic border crossing with Turkey, claiming the rebels had seized "Syria’s gateway to Europe". Muhannad Issa, a Vice Commander of Idlib Martyrs Brigade of the Free Syrian Army, said from Hatay in Turkey that the seizure of the Bab al-Hawa crossing was a major victory for the rebels.
Muhannad Issa, Vice Commander of Idlib Martyrs Brigade, said, "The strategic importance of Bab al-Hawa is that it is Syria’s gateway to Europe through Turkey. Now the FSA has control of Bab al-Hawa. The helicopters and the Syrian army might be shelling but it is the FSA that has control of the strategic gate and from now on it will be of no use to the Syrian government."
The seizure came after a bombing on Wednesday that killed three top Syrian officials. The government pulled its most powerful troops from around the country to reinforce Damascus, which allowed rebels to swoop in and take over key areas. Also on Friday, the UN Security Council unanimously approved a resolution renewing the 300-strong UN observer force in Syria for 30 days.