On Wednesday afternoon inside the Latakia Governorate’s northern countryside, the Islamist rebels of Jabhat Al-Nusra (Syrian Al-Qaeda group) and the Free Syrian Army (FSA) launched another counter-offensive in the Turkmen Mountains (Jabal Al-Turkmen) to recapture the territory they lost to the Syrian Arab Army’s 103rd Brigade of the Republican Guard last week.
The Islamist rebels of Jabhat Al-Nusra and the Free Syrian Army were able to seize the villages of ‘Ayn Al-Hawr, Wadi Sheikhan, and Al-Ghumaymiyah after a violent battle with the Syrian Arab Army’s 103rd Brigade and the National Defense Forces near the strategic mountaintop of Khan Al-Jouz.
Following the capture of Al-Hawz, the Islamist rebels began to lose momentum after their forces spread too thin along the front-lines of Jabal Al-Turkmen; this allowed for the Syrian Arab Army’s 103rd Brigade – backed by the National Defense Forces and thee Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP) – to regain the initiative near ‘Ayn Al-Hawz.
According to the battlefield correspondent Eyad Al-Hussein, the Syrian Armed Forces were able to recapture the village of ‘Ayn Al-Hawz and much of Al-Ghumaymiyah, while also forestalling the rebel offensive.
Currently, clashes are still ongoing between the Syrian Armed Forces and the Islamist rebels inside the village Al-Ghumaymiyah; this site is imperative to Nusra and the FSA because of its proximity to the heights of Khan Al-Jouz.