DAMASCUS, SYRIA (2:25 A.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) is on the roll through the eastern Aleppo countryside after three more villages were captured around midnight.
Reaching rural areas off limits to the SAA since 2012, the Tiger Forces and pro-government Al-Baqir tribal fighters managed to take full control of Jafirah, Abu Maqbarah Al-Kabeera and Abu Maqbarah Saghira following the liberation of two nearby villages earlier in the day.
Moving eastwards along the M4 highway, Syrian government forces hope to capture Jirah Airbase in the near future and push towards the ISIS bastion of Maskanah, thus reaching the provincial border between Aleppo and Raqqa.
Meanwhile, the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have established a foothold in the Tabqa region on the southern bank of the Euphrates River, threatening to cutoff ISIS militants in Aleppo province from the Islamic State heartland in Raqqa.
The Kurdish offensive could also potentially prompt ISIS commanders to withdraw entirely from the Aleppo governorate in a bid to reinforce defenses around Tabqa and Raqqa.
HD map here.