Earlier this week, the Syrian Arab Army’s 137th Artillery Brigade of the 17th Tank Division launched a wide-scale offensive to recapture territory from the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS); however, without air cover, they were unable to make any significant gains inside the provincial capital of the Deir Ezzor Governorate.
No more than 12 hours after the Syrian Armed Forces’ offensive was forestalled, ISIS launched a counter-assault that was concentrated on the Deir Ezzor Military Airport’s southeastern perimeter.
On Thursday morning, the terrorist group sent three suicide bombers and hundreds of combatants to swarm the Army Base outside of the Deir Ezzor Military Airport, killing 23 soldiers from the 137th Brigade before ISIS was able to impose complete control over the last building situated between the Artillery Battalion Base and the Airbase.
With ISIS in prime position to attack the Deir Ezzor Military Airport’s southeastern gate, the Syrian Arab Army personnel outside the base were ordered to withdraw to the guard posts in preparation for a large-scale assault from the terrorist group.
On Friday, the terrorist group struck again, launching four suicide bombers towards the southeastern gate of the Deir Ezzor Military Airport; however, all of the vehicles were destroyed by the Syrian Armed Forces before they could reach their destination.
According to a military source from the Syrian Arab Army’s 104th Airborne Brigade of the Republican Guard, the Syrian Armed Forces suffered another 16 casualties on Friday, while the terrorist group sustained a total of 73 casualties (confirmed) and the destruction of 14 armored vehicles (suicide vehicles included) that were either mounted with a 23mm or 57mm anti-aircraft machine gun during those tense 48 hours.
Unable to penetrate the Deir Ezzor Military Airport’s southeastern gate, ISIS turned their attention to the villages of Al-Muri’iyah and Al-Jafra, where they attempted to bypass the Syrian Armed Forces’ frontline defenses on Saturday; unfortunately for the terrorist group, their promising assault turned into disaster when the Syrian Air Force reappeared after a 48 hour hiatus.
The Syrian Air Force played an integral role on Saturday, as they conducted airstrike after airstrike on the terrorist group’s positions in the aforementioned villages, leaving a 500 meter long field filled with an unknown amount of dead ISIS fighters that were attempting to make their way to the frontlines.
As Sunday approaches, the ISIS terrorists will likely prepare for one last infiltration attempt at the Deir Ezzor Military Airport; if unsuccessful, they will most likely call off their counter-offensive.