On Friday morning, the Homs Governorate erupted in violence in the northern countryside after the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) – backed by the National Defense Forces (NDF) and Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP) – carried out a series of attacks on the Al-Qaeda linked Al-Nusra Front (Jabhat Al-Nusra) at the village of Hawsh Hajou, killing scores of militants and capturing approximately 200 square meters of enemy controlled territory.

At Rajam Al-Qasr (the Palace), the SAA and NDF continued their progress in the Homs Governorate, targeting armed militants from the Al-Nusra Front throughout this area and its surroundings earlier this afternoon. The loyalist forces were to capture a small weapons depot in this area, seizing a large cache of rockets, mortar shells, assault rifles, and ammunition before destroying the warehouse.

A number of civilians were arrested by Al-Nusra Front in the city of Ar-Rastan following a demonstration in support of the Syrian Arab Army. The civilians were reportedly taken to an undisclosed location and have not been heard of since their apprehension by the militants of the Al-Nusra Front. These demonstrations took place for 2 days straight, until they were obstructed by the militant group.

Also in northern Homs, a militant convoy was identified by NDF scouts attempting to make its way to the southern corridor of the Hama Governorate from the village of Al-Hawli. The militant group was later confronted by a contingent from the NDF and were subsequently forced to withdraw south of the border after sustaining significant casualties.

According to a military source in Al-Wa’er, officers from Syrian Arab Army and leaders from the armed militants inside this city are currently working on a ceasefire agreement that would seek to dissipate the ongoing violence and restore civil institutions. No further details were provided.

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