1. ITV Report

Are rebels losing grip over Aleppo?

Free Syrian Army member aims his weapon after hearing shooting in Aleppo. Photo: Reuters

Syria's Foreign Minister has predicted that rebels in Aleppo, the country's largest city, will soon be defeated.

Helicopter gunships opened fire over the city, as artillery pounded rebel-held districts of Aleppo. Rebels have been clashing with reinforced army troops there for several days.

This comes after Bashar al-Assad's government declared victory on Sunday in a hard-fought battle for Syria's capital Damascus.

Assad's forces have struggled as never before to maintain their grip on the country over the past two weeks after a major rebel advance into the two largest cities and an explosion that killed four top security officials.

Our International Correspondent John Irvine reports.