Discuss as:

Syrian rebels and Assad's loyalist troops continue battle for Aleppo

Phil Moore / AFP - Getty Images

A Syrian rebel with a bandaged eye walks past closed shops in the Bab Nasr district of Aleppo on Aug. 14.

Fresh fighting erupted in Aleppo, Syria, monitors said, as a pro-government daily warned the capture of a key rebel district was just a "first step" in the retaking of all opposition areas. 

Core loyalist troops, drawn mostly from Assad's minority Alawite sect, are locked primarily into what is shaping up to be a protracted battle for Aleppo, as well as in shoring up an uncertain grip over the capital Damascus.

In the process, Assad faces the specter of Deir al-Zor province slipping out of his orbit and with it Syria's 200,000 barrel-a-day oil output, military experts and diplomats say.

Continue reading Reuters article.

Phil Moore / AFP - Getty Images

A Syrian rebel holds his rifle in the Bab Nasr district of Aleppo on Aug. 14.

Phil Moore / AFP - Getty Images

A shell blast damaged a hospital room in the Shaar district of the northern city of Aleppo on Aug. 14.

Goran Tomasevic / Reuters

A Free Syrian Army fighter fires his sniper rifle from a house in Aleppo on Aug. 14.

Sign up for the msnbc.com Photos Newsletter

Goran Tomasevic / Reuters

After months of protests and violent crackdowns, a look back at the violence that has overtaken the country.