Staggering bravery of the boy, 17, who risked his life to rescue stranger shot by a sniper in Syria only to find she was dead
Teenager's selfless attempt to rescue the woman filmed in Aleppo Russia says President Assad is losing control of the country to the rebels
Syrian government denies firing scud missiles at rebel areas
MSF – also known as Doctors Without Borders – says tens of thousands of Syrians are trapped by fighting in Deir al-ZorReports that survivors in Aleppo are being starved out by Assad's regime
09:43 GMT, 14 December 2012
Body pressed flat against the pavement, a 17-year-old boy is caught on film putting his own life in danger to rescue a total stranger shot by a sniper in Syria.
The woman had been walking through the streets of war torn Aleppo with her son when a gunman opened fire and shot her.
Rebel fighter Abdullah, 17, spotted the woman and decided he had to get her to safety.
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Rescue attempt: Brave 17-year-old Abdullah starts crawling towards a woman lying on the ground in Aleppo
Risking his life: Abdullah, a former baker, eventually manages to reach the woman despite bullets raining down around him
He told CNN: 'We had a feeling she was still alive. We wanted to save her, to get her to a hospital.'
But as Abdullah slowly crawls across to the woman on his stomach, loud gunshots start to fire around him as his fellow rebel fighters shout: 'Cover, him, cover him.'
The footage appears to show the woman briefly moving her hand as Abdullah reaches her but more and more gun shots are fired.
Abduallah added: 'If I die it's god will I die next to this woman.'
Abdullah, a baker before civil war broke out in the country after uprisings in March 2011, then ties a rope around the woman.
Risky: It is too dangerous for Abdullah to carry the woman back with him, so he ties some rope around her waist
Abdullah is then forced to run for safety, pictured to the left of the screen, and leave the woman lying on the ground
The teenager then quickly runs to safety before pulling the woman to him with the rope.
But by the time the woman is reunited with her son she has tragically died from her wounds.
The heartbreaking footage filmed by CNN comes as Syria's biggest ally, Russia, has stated President Bashar Assad is losing control of his country and the rebels might win the civil war.
It is the first time Moscow has acknowledged the regime is cracking under the force of a powerful rebellion.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said: 'An opposition victory can't be excluded, unfortunately, but it's necessary to look at the facts: There is a trend for the government to progressively lose control over an increasing part of the territor.'
Pulled to safety: The rebels refuse to leave the woman behind and pull her to their hiding place
Tragic: The distraught son of the woman stands to her right after she died from her wounds
Russia's ties to Syria date back to Assad's father, Hafez, who ruled Syria with an iron fist from 1971 until his death in June 2000. In the last four decades, Russia has sold Syria billions of dollars' worth of weapons. A change in power in Damascus could not only cost Russia lucrative trade deals, but also reduce Russian political influence in Arab world.
Bogdanov also said Moscow is preparing to evacuate thousands of its citizens from Syria, where nearly two years of violent conflict have killed more than 40,000 people and turned Assad into a global pariah.
Brave: Rebel fighter Abdullah, 17, is pictured talking about his heroic efforts
'We are dealing with issues related to the preparation for evacuation,' Bogdanov said. 'We have mobilization plans. We are finding out where our citizens are.'
His statement marks a clear attempt by the Kremlin to begin positioning itself for Assad's eventual defeat at a time when rebels are making significant gains.
Opposition fighters have seized large swaths of territory in northern Syria along the border with Turkey and appear to be expanding their control outside of Damascus, pushing the fight closer to Assad's seat of power in the capital.
'On the losing side': Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, pictured right with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem, said that President Bashar Assad is losing control over Syria
Winning the war: The statement by Russia's foreign minister is the first time the country has said there may be a chance the rebels will beat Assad
In a Damascus suburb, a bomb blast near a school today killed 16 people, at least half of them women and children, the state news agency SANA reported.
The government says the bombing on Thursday is the latest in a string of similar bombings in and around Damascus that have killed at least 25 people in the last two days.
The government blames the bombings on terrorists, the term it uses to refer to rebel fighters. While no one has claimed responsibility for the bombings, some have targeted government buildings and killed officials, suggesting that rebels who don't have the firepower to engage Assad's elite forces in the capital could be resorting to guerrilla measures.
Similar attacks hit four places in and around Damascus on Wednesday. Three bombs collapsed walls of the Interior Ministry building, killing at least five people. One of the dead was Syrian parliament member Abdullah Qairouz, SANA reported.
It comes after the U.S. and NATO said Assad's forces had fired Scud missiles at rebel areas, which the President denies, calling them nothing more than a conspiracy.
In ruins: Damaged buildings and rubble covered streets are seen in the Karam Shamsham area in Homs
'Being starved out': A Syrian woman and girl carry their belongings after their home was destroyed in Aleppo where the price up bread has rocketed by 1300 per cent
But the NATO secretary-general said the military alliance detected the launch of a number of the unguided short-range missiles inside Syria earlier this week.
He added: 'We can't confirm details of the missiles, but some of the information indicates they were Scud-type missiles.
'In general, I think the regime in Damascus is approaching collapse. I think now it's only a question of time.'
Meanwhile, tens of thousands of Syrians have become trapped in the city of Deir al-Zor by fighting as calls are made for medical teams to be allowed to evacuate the wounded.
The group Medecins Sans Frontieres, also known as Doctors Without Borders, said the Syrian government had yet to authorize the deployment of international aid agencies despite the growing humanitarian crisis in the country.
Deir al-Zor has become one of many urban battlegrounds in the 20-month-old revolt against President Bashar al-Assad. With daily army shelling and routes cut off by fighting, many residents are trapped.
The group said in a statement: 'MSF appeals for international and impartial medical assistance to be officially authorized by the government and for such assistance to be respected by all parties of the conflict.'
No power: Toys are seen among the rubble of damaged shops in Aleppo's al-Amereya district after the city's electricity was cut off 25 days ago
Humanitarian crisis: Groups are calling for aid to be delivered to Syrian cities where injured civilians have become trapped because of the fighting
Medical supplies are running short and only a small team of exhausted Syrian medics are left inside the embattled eastern city, MSF coordinator Patrick Wieland said.
Wieland, who visited the area, said there was now only one makeshift hospital with four doctors in city, which sits near the Iraqi border and was once home to around 600,000 people.
An MSF team unofficially visited Deir al-Zor province but said conditions were too dangerous for them to enter the main city with the same name. The team visited public and private hospitals around the city and said the premises were inundated with wounded, some of them with hundreds of patients.
'Despite support from a Syrian doctors' organization, medical supplies are almost impossible to get hold of, and aerial bombardments and sniper fire make evacuating patients by stretcher extremely difficult,' the MSF report said.
'The health system is being targeted, and medical supplies, including drugs and blood products, are running out, while the number of wounded continues to increase.'
The startling reports of the state of medical care comes as The Times newspaper reports Syrian survivors in Aleppo are being starved as part of Assad's desperate bid to weaken the rebels and cling to power.
The city has no electricity since the lines were cut 25 days ago, leaving civilians with hardly any fuel, running water and no working phone lines.
The lack of power means flower mills can no longer provide the city with enough flour and the daily production of bread has fallen by 70 per cent in the majority of the large bakeries.
This has caused food prices in Aleppo to rocket by 75 per cent in just over a month with a loaf of bread increasing in price by an astonishing 1300 per cent. Wages have also plummeted and many are out of work.
VIDEO: Air strikes across Syria, rebels attempt to shoot down helicopters
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Teenager's selfless attempt to rescue the woman filmed in Aleppo