While the Islamist rebels of Jabhat Al-Nusra (Syrian Al-Qaeda group), Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham, the Free Syrian Army (FSA), and Jabhat Al-Shamiyah lose several kilometers of territory in northern Latakia and southern Aleppo, their allies from Jund Al-Aqsa (Syrian Al-Qaeda group) have renewed their large-scale offensive in the Hama Governorate’s northern countryside, despite repeated calls for assistance against the Syrian Armed Forces and Hezbollah in the more volatile fronts.
Dismissing Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham and Jabhat Al-Nusra’s distress calls in southern Aleppo, Jund Al-Aqsa launched a powerful assault on the small villages of Ma’sasineh, Al-Buwaydah, and Markabat near the strategic towns Taybat Al-Imam and Souran; this assault is meant to advance their positions along the strategic Aleppo-Damascus Highway (M-5 Highway) that flows through the provincial capital of the Hama Governorate.
So far, the Islamist rebels of Jund Al-Aqsa have claimed to capture Markabat and Al-Buwaydah after advancing from the nearby town of Al-Lataminah; however, a local journalist embedded with the Syrian Arab Army’s 87th Brigade of the 11th Tank Brigade has denied these claims, stating that the Islamists have not entered Al-Buwaydah.
The Syrian journalist has also added that Jund Al-Aqsa and their allies have suffered heavy casualties and the loss of 6 armored vehicles that were mounted with a variety of anti-aircraft vehicles.
Should the Islamist rebels of Jund Al-Aqsa seize Al-Buwaydah; this would leave the imperative town of Souran as the next target for the Al-Qaeda combatants in northern Hama.