The Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) has restarted their large-scale offensive of east Hama after failing to maintain control of the village of Al-Maba’ouji in the province last week.
ISIS began their offensive in east Hama by attempting to break into the four villages of Al-Sheikh Hilaal, Al-Maba’ouji, ‘Aqeerabat, and Al-Deeminah in the Al-Salamiyah District; this occurred after the embattled ISIS fighters received reinforcements from the Ar-Raqqa Governorate on Friday.
The first ISIS attack came at 6:30 A.M. in ‘Aqeerabat, where the latter fired a barrage of mortars and rockets into the peaceful village, resulting in the death of two civilians – fighting later broke-out at the eastern checkpoint between ISIS and the NDF.
Continuing their terror in Al-Maba’ouji, ISIS attempted to breach the NDF’s checkpoints on the outer perimeter of the village; however, this time, the NDF was prepared and subsequently repelled the assault within the first hour of the firefight, inflicting heavy losses on the enemy combatants from ISIS.
To not be outdone, ISIS followed up the attacks at Al-Maba’ouji and ‘Aqeerabat with an assault at the villages of Al-Sheikh Hilaal and Al-Deeminah, where they found limited success due to the fierce resistance they encountered from the NDF and Syrian Arab Army (SAA).
According to a military source in the province, Brigadier General Yahya Baawish (nicknamed “The Wolf”) is leading the National Defense Forces and Syrian Arab Army operations in eastern Hama – he has deployed reinforcements around the Al-Salamiyah District to prepare for another ISIS attack.
Fighting has resumed on Sunday morning in the villages of ‘Aqeerabat, Al-Sheikh Hilaal, and Al-Deeminah; however, ISIS has still been unable to gain any significant ground.