Syrian army secures largest ISIL hotbed in Homs province

Bruno Cirelli
Agosto 13, 2017

The town lies some 50 km (30 miles) northeast of the ancient city of Palmyra, which was captured by the army in March.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu says the Syrian government has increased the size of the territory under its control by 2 1/2 times in just two months.

These gains enable further advances into eastern areas held by Islamic State (ISIS), including the province of Deir al-Zor, where the circle around jihadists is slowly forming as the government forces are pushing from their positions in southern parts of Raqqa province.

"The liberation of As-Sukhnah from Daesh terrorists opens new opportunities for the Syrian government forces to launch an offensive and deblock the city of Deir ez-Zor".

"The civil defence centre in Sarmin was the target of an armed attack by unknown assailants in which seven volunteers were killed", the White Helmets said in statement.

"Colleagues came in the morning for the change of shift and found them dead", its director, Rami Abdel Rahman, said.

The White Helmets organization was formed in 2013, working to rescue civilians in rebel-held areas in Syria. By August 10, the Syrian forces "seized the neighboring strategically important heights and blocked the city", and by 03:00 on August 13, with support of the Russian pilots they repelled the militants from the northern and western areas. Tahrir al-Sham was formed in January 2017 from a merger of several Islamist factions and Syria's former al Qaeda affiliate, known as the Nusra Front.

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