The end of the Kuweires Military Airport’s long siege has created a world of problems for the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) inside the Deir Hafer Plains, as their once untouched supply route that stretched from the from the provincial capital of the Aleppo Governorate to the provincial capital of the Al-Raqqa Governorate has been cutoff by the Syrian Armed Forces.

The Kuweries Military Airport is strategically located 8km west of ISIS’ stronghold at Deir Hafer and 17km south of the imperative city of Al-Bab – both of these cities are separated by the Aleppo-Raqqa Highway.

Map showing the cities of Al-Bab and Deir Hafer
Map showing the cities of Al-Bab and Deir Hafer in the east Aleppo countryside

Deir Hafer is situated along the Aleppo-Raqqa Highway and it provides ISIS a gateway from their capital at Al-Raqqa to the entire eastern Aleppo countryside; without control of this highway, they will have to rely on the season roads that are within range of the Syrian Arab Army’s anti-tank missiles.

Without direct access to Al-Bab from Deir Hafer, ISIS will be forced to find another supply route that will likely take them much longer to travel through, which, in turn, will leave them vulnerable to airstrikes and other militaristic obstacles.

Another obstacle that ISIS faces as a result of this siege ending is the Syrian Army’s presence at the southern countryside of the Al-Bab Plains.

This is a much larger issue than one might assume because the Al-Bab Plains looks firmly under ISIS’ control; however, those small villages to the south of Al-Bab city are very poorly defended because the terrorist group had virtually no one threatening this area.

Now, the Syrian Armed Forces are able to cross the Aleppo-Raqqa Highway to harass ISIS’ poorly defended villages in the Al-Bab Plains and there is not much they can do about it.

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

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