The military situation for the government in northern Syria is far more concerning than originally believed; this is due in large-part to the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) cutting off two separate supply routes that are used by the Syrian Armed Forces.
On Sunday night around 10 P.M. (Damascus Time), ISIS launched two simultaneous attacks in southeast Aleppo and northeast Hama, seizing points on the Khanasser-Aleppo Road and the Sheikh Hilal-Ithriyah Road after a violent battle with the National Defense Forces (NDF).
While the immediate concern was the Khanasser-Aleppo Road because of its proximity to the Aleppo Governorate, the battle taking place along the Sheikh Hilal-Ithriyah Road was barely reported.
However, it was later revealed on Monday night that ISIS had also cutoff the Sheikh Hilal-Ithriyah Road, leaving the soldiers from the Syrian Arab Army’s 555th Brigade of the 4th Mechanized Division trapped along the Salamiyah-Raqqa Highway.
With two different army units stranded, the Syrian Armed Forces concentrated on the Khanasser-Aleppo Road, where they were able to recapture several points from ISIS and their allies.
Earlier this morning, the Syrian Armed Forces began the process of clearing the Sheikh Hilal-Ithriyah Road after ISIS attempted to advance along this roadway on Monday.
Both roads remain closed; however, sources from the Syrian Armed Forces remain confident that these supply routes will be reopened in the coming days.