Syrian rebels have captured a number of positions on the country's borders with Turkey and Iraq.
A senior Iraqi official said all the crossings on Syria's eastern frontier had been seized.
At one point, two Turkish posts were also in rebel hands.
The rebels, perhaps sensing that the regime was too preoccupied with the escalating battle for the capital, stormed all the posts on the Iraqi border.
More than 20 Syrian soldiers and their commander were killed when a remote army outpost in the far north-east was attacked.
The push came a day after a bomb claimed the lives of three senior defence officials in Damascus.
The first images of President Assad since the attack have appeared, largely ending rumours he might have been hurt.
The footage appeared to show Gen Fahd Jassim al-Furayj, chief of staff of the armed forces, being sworn into his new post.