The Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) was rolling in the deserts of east Homs and the northern countryside of Aleppo, as both the Syrian Armed Forces and the Syrian Al-Qaeda organization “Jabhat Al-Nusra” and the Levantine Front (Jabhat Al-Shamiyah) struggled to forestall this terrorist offensive; however, despite massive gains in east Syria, ISIS has left their positions in east Hama exposed to the National Defense Forces (NDF) and the Syrian Arab Army’s (SAA) powerful counter-assault.

Following a month of inactivity, the Syrian Armed Forces responded to the increased presence of ISIS fighters near the strategic city of Al-Salamiyah in the eastern Hama Governorate; this resulted in a joint counter-offensive launched by the Syrian Arab Army and the National Defense Forces at the villages of Umm Taweenah, Zanouba, and Rasm Al-Qadisiyah on Saturday morning.

Not long after they launched their joint assault at the villages of Umm Taweenah, Zanouba, and Rasm Al-Qadisiyah, the Syrian Armed Forces (NDF and SAA) imposed full control over this area, killing 26 confirmed enemy combatants from ISIS, including Hussien Yousif Mohsen, Bashir Khaled Na’eem, Mohammad Za’id Al-Shamsi, Mohammad ‘Umar Al-‘Abdullah, Mohannad ‘Issa Mumdouh, and Rakan Mahmoud Al-Hosni.

It is not entirely clear what the Syrian Armed Forces’ objective is, but their recent assault on the northeastern Homs village of Jazal has made it imperative for the aforementioned to strengthen their frontlines amid ISIS’ spread across the entire desert terrain of the Homs Governorate.

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