By Laila Bassam BEIRUT (Reuters) - The Syrian army and allied Iranian and Hezbollah forces are preparing for a ground offensive against insurgents in the Aleppo area backed by Russian air strikes, two senior regional officials familiar with the plans said on Tuesday. A big government offensive in the area near the Turkish border is likely to further anger NATO member Ankara, which has backed insurgents fighting Assad and has already expressed deep concern over Russian air strikes that have targeted them. Control of Aleppo city and the surrounding province is divided among the Syrian government, a range of insurgent groups fighting Assad, and the Islamic State group that controls some rural areas near the city.
BRUSSELS/LONDON (Reuters) - The world's top two brewers, Anheuser-Busch InBev and SABMiller , have agreed in principle to one of the biggest mergers in corporate history after a near month-long courtship resulted in SABMiller accepting an offer worth more than $100 billion. The planned combination announced on Tuesday would marry AB InBev's Budweiser, Stella Artois and Corona brands with SABMiller's Peroni, Grolsch and Pilsner Urquell and brew almost a third of the world's beer, dwarfing other major producers like Heineken and Carlsberg . For AB InBev the SABMiller deal will give it more breweries in Latin America and Asia and an entrance to Africa at a time when some of its home markets such as the United States are weakening as drinkers shun mainstream lagers in favor of craft brews and cocktails.