BEIRUT — Syrian rebels on Friday captured 150 regime troops and militia members in the northern city of Aleppo and the northwestern province of Idlib, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
It reported rebels as saying they had captured 100 regime soldiers and militia members in Aleppo and another 50 in Idlib, citing videos distributed by Syrian activists.
The video of dozens of men in civilian clothing seated in a courtyard in Aleppo was filmed by a man describing himself as a member of the rebel Free Syrian Army.
The captured men tell the camera that they are in the Syrian army and the "shabiha" pro-regime militia.
"I am Colonel Mohammed Rashid Mohammed al-Mhmeid... I was arrested at the entrance of Aleppo," one says.
"I am Captain Fuad al-Hosh, commander of the Aleppo police in Shaar district. I was captured when I left my post," says another.
One man identifies himself as a member of the shabiha, saying he was captured in Hanano in Aleppo and had "killed a demonstrator."
Both rebels and troops have been massing in Aleppo for a major battle, but fighting has already taken place, including in the southern district of Salaheddin.
The Observatory said the second video shows the aftermath of fighting in the town of Maaret al-Numan in Idlib.
"After clashes that lasted 12 hours, rebels destroyed a military security post and captured 50 regime troops, including 14 officers," Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP by phone.
Abdul Rahman said the fighters seized a large amount of weapons and ammunition from the military post near a checkpoint.
In the video posted on YouTube, rebels in civilian clothing are seen rummaging through what appears to be an old building used as government offices.
The person recording the footage walks through an arched hallway into an adjacent room, where a body with a severed arm lies on the floor.
One man tells the others: "Pee on him."
"No, he's already dead. Show some respect," another retorts.
Outside, the streets are littered with debris and teenage boys and men walk freely, toting Kalashnikov assault rifles.
"This is the largest street in Maaret al-Numan, which was controlled by the regime. It is now in the hands of the local rebels." the cameraman is heard to say.
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