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Pro-regime Sunni fighters in Aleppo defy sectarian narrative

Pro-regime militias such as the Al-Quds and Baath Brigades are at the forefront of the battle against rebels in Aleppo, and they're mostly Sunni.
Smoke rises at the Karaj al-Hajez crossing, a passageway separating Aleppo's Bustan al-Qasr, which is under the rebels' control and Al-Masharqa neighbourhood, an area controlled by the regime March 13, 2014. REUTERS/Sultan Ketaz (SYRIA - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST CONFLICT) - RTR3GZNW
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ALEPPO, Syria — This month marks three years of an uprising that has swept through Syria, leaving death and ruin in its wake. Aleppo has suffered 18 months of brutal, divisive conflict. The city now lies split, both in territorial control and along social, political fault lines.

The conflict in Syria has taken on many shapes as it mutated from a popular mass movement for political change into a proxy civil war with sectarian undertones. Each region of this land, a diverse tapestry with intricately interwoven social, ethnic and religious ties bound together with the strings of a shared history, has experienced the conflict in distinct ways.

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