Syrian helicopter gunships killed at least six people Friday when they dropped barrel bombs on the strategic rebel stronghold of Yabrud, close to the Lebanese border, a monitor said.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the attacks followed a string of raids by regime war planes around the town, which the army is trying to recapture.

The raids came a day after loyalists backed by Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shiite movement, killed at least 17 Islamist fighters in the battle for Yabrud. […]