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Syria rebels destroy bridges in anticipation of offensive

BEIRUT — A Syria war monitoring group says opposition fighters have blown up two bridges linking areas they control to government-held territories in northwestern Syria in anticipation of a military offensive.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Friday the Turkey-backed rebels blew up the bridges as Syria and its ally Russia warn of a military operation to restore government control over Idlib and the surrounding areas, which are the last rebel strongholds in Syria. An offensive in the area home to some 3 million Syrians is likely to trigger a major humanitarian crisis.

The bridges linked rebel and government-held villages in al-Ghab plains, south of Idlib.

Rami Abdulrahman, the head of the Observatory, said the explosions rocked the area and came after rebels detected troop movement in the area.