Syrian rebels advance on positions near Golan Heights

Syrian rebel commanders recently announced their forces have taken a government military intelligence compound near the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights.

The compound is located near the Yarmouk River in the Shagara, which is only eight kilometers from Syria's 1974 ceasefire line with Israel. In recent weeks, the border has grown increasingly volatile as the opposition began targeting army and intelligence compounds in the area, according to Al Jazeera.

"We have completely taken over this security compound this morning. It's a command center for the shabiha (pro-regime militia). They retreated after strong blows dealt to them during a five day siege," Abu Iyas al-Haurani of the Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade announced, Al Jazeera reports. "Anyone who was arrested in the Yarmouk Valley was sent to this military intelligence headquarters to be tortured and it has a strategic importance. With its fall we have completed our liberation of the town of Shagara."

Another rebel commander has said the aims of the attacks in the region are to open a new front against the faltering government forces and to secure a supply route to the western approaches of Damascus, which would be critical for the rebels if they are to conduct a siege against the capital, according to Al Jazeera