On Monday morning, the conglomerate of Al-Qaeda affiliates known as “Jaysh Al-Fateh” (Army of Conquest) launched a large-scale offensive in the northeastern countryside of the Al-Ghaab Plains, targeting the strategic collection of hills that overlook rural Hama’s large agricultural sector to the west.
The Jaysh Al-Fateh assault at Tal Wassit, Tal ‘Awar, Tal Shiekh Al-Elyas, and Tal Muntar were led by Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham, Ansar Al-Sham, and the Syrian Al-Qaeda group “Jabhat Al-Nusra.
Initially, the Islamist militants were successful, capturing the hilltops of Tal Wasssit, Tal Muntar, Tal Sheikh Al-Elyas, and Tal ‘Awar; however, as nightfall approached, the Islamist fighters were at the mercy of the Syrian Armed Forces’ relentless mortar shells and rockets that struck their positions in theses areas.
Following their counter assault at these hilltops, the Syrian Arab Army’s 87th Brigade of the 11th Tank Division – in coordination with the National Defense Forces (NDF) and elements from the Syrian Arab Army’s 106th Brigade of the Republican Guard – conducted their own counter-offensive that resulted in the recapture of all these sites, despite the Islamist militants best efforts to obstruct their progress.
According to a military source in the Al-Ghaab Plains, the Syrian Arab Army’s 87th Brigade has regained control of any lost territory to Jaysh Al-Fateh on Saturday morning.
Islamist social media activists have reported the mobilization of Jaysh Al-Fateh fighters near the critical city of Jisr Al-Shughour in order to clear the remaining pockets under the Syrian Armed Forces’ control.