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Syrian opposition split on timing of Assad military offensive

An anticipated military operation by the regime and its allies in the city of al-Bab has stirred controversy among the opposition ranks.

ALEPPO, Syria — News spread recently among popular and military quarters in the city of al-Bab in the northeastern countryside of Aleppo about the Syrian regime and its Russian-backed allies launching a military attack in the area, stirring anxiety and controversy among residents of the city, which is controlled by the Turkish-backed armed opposition. 

The regime has been mobilizing reinforcements in the areas near al-Bab since the beginning of January amid concerns among locals that they may be part of the military buildup that portends a future military operation aimed at controlling the strategic city of al-Bab.

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