Internet and telephones cut in Syria
BEIRUT (AP) -- Syrian state television says the country's local and international telephone lines as well as the Internet are down because of technical problems.
The station says technicians are working to fix the problem in Syria's main fiber optic cable. The report gave no further details.
Calls were not going through to Syria Monday afternoon.
Canadian network monitoring firm BGPmon said Monday that Syria was hit by a countrywide Internet outage - affecting more than 90 percent of the nation's networks - at 11:30 Syria time (0930 GMT).
Telephones and the Internet have been cut on several occasions since Syria's crisis began in March 2011.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.
Syrian government troops took full control of a western town near the main north-south highway, state media said, a development that could pave the way for the start of overland transport of the country's chemical weapons to a port for destruction abroad.
Activists say that rebels still hold part of Nabek, however.
The road near Nabek holds strategic value for both sides in Syria's conflict, now in its third year. The highway serves as a crucial link between the capital Damascus and northern Syria as well as government strongholds along the Mediterranean coast. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said last week it would consider using the road to transport Syria's chemical weapons to the port of Latakia before they are taken out for possible destruction at sea.
Syrian state TV said President Bashar Assad's army took Nabek Monday morning after "a series of precise operations." Troops are still pursuing "terrorists" in the town's outskirts.
Rami Abdurrahman, the head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the government controls most of Nabek. It said fighting was ongoing Monday in areas around the town that have in the past days seen heavy clashes between the Syrian army and its Lebanon Hezbollah allies and Islamist rebels, including many from an al-Qaida-linked group, on the opposition side.
The Observatory said the highway has been closed for 19 days because of the fighting. On Sunday, the army said it has reopened the road.