Not much is left of the once thriving town of Ghammam in the Turkmen Mountains (Jabal Al-Turkmen); however, amid the rubble and dilapidated buildings, this town has become the main site of the Latakia Governorate’s most violent firefights between the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and the Syrian Al-Qaeda group “Jabhat Al-Nusra”.

In the last two weeks, the aforementioned military parties have traded control over this town at least four times, with the Syrian Arab Army’s 103rd Brigade of the Republican Guard and the Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP) capturing Ghammam over the weekend.

Despite the beautiful mountain landscape that surrounds it, the Syrian Armed Forces and the Islamist rebels have committed themselves to imposing their control over Ghammam while disregarding the heavy death toll they both have experienced as a result of their persistency.

On Tuesday morning, Jabhat Al-Nusra – in coordination with the Free Syrian Army’s “1st Coastal Brigade” – attempted to bypass the Syrian Arab Army’s defensive positions at the northern perimeter of Ghammam; however, they discovered a military force that was unwilling to abandon their fortifications.

Moments after reaching the northern entrance of Ghammam, Syrian Opposition media activists declared the site under their control, despite not actually seizing anything other than a few army posts outside of this town.

Unfortunately for the Islamist rebel fighters, they were unable to enter Ghammam after a five hour firefight with the Syrian Arab Army’s 103rd Brigade and the Syrian Social Nationalist Party at the town’s northern entrance.

According to a military source with the SSNP in Ghammam, the Islamist rebels were repelled after they sustained a significant number of casualties; this number was estimated between 20-30 enemy comabatants, but remains unconfirmed by the Syrian Army.

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Editor-in-Chief Specializing in Near Eastern Affairs and Economics.

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