It took less than one month for Hezbollah and the Syrian Arab Army’s 20th and 128th Brigades of the 1st Armored Division to force the Syrian Al-Qaeda group “Jabhat Al-Nusra” and their affiliates to withdraw from the eastern slopes of the Qalamoun Mountains to the hills of Jaroud ‘Arsal in Lebanon, where they enjoy a small parcel of territory under their possession,
This was not an easy task for the Syrian Armed Forces and Hezbollah, as the Qalamoun Mountains of Syria provided the militants from Jabhat Al-Nusra and their affiliates a fortress to launch offensives, while also providing them a number of border-crossings to reinforce and resupply their entrenched combatants around the Rif Dimashq Governorate.
Unfortunately for the Al-Qaeda fighters, Hezbollah and the Syrian Armed Forces were not willing to allow them to maintain a presence on the border of Lebanon; this developed into a well-strategized offensive that was organized by the Lebanese Resistance and the Syrian Arab Army’s Central Command, as the need to clear this mountain salient became a top priority for both parties.
On Saturday morning, the SAA’s 20th and 128th Brigades stormed the remaining positions belonging to the Jabhat Al-Nusra fighters at Jaroud Faleeta, resulting in the latter’s withdrawal into Lebanon after a series of fierce clashes that included a number of airstrikes from the Syrian Arab Air Force (SAAF); however, Jabhat Al-Nusra is likely to counter in order to evade the complete encirclement by Hezbollah in Lebanon.
According to Al-Mayadeen News, this one month long military operation has resulted in the death of over 800 enemy combatants from the Syrian Al-Qaeda entity; this has not been verified by the Syrian Arab Army’s Central Command.