BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:00 P.M.) – After a considerable hiatus, elite units of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) are once again on the roll in eastern Damascus, signalling what appears to be a renewed attempt by pro-government forces to remove deeply-entrenched Islamist militants from the districts of Jobar and Ayn Tarma.
Today, Republican Guard units, supported by the National Defence Forces (NDF) and artillery and armor of the 4th Mechanized Division made a key advance today in Ayn Tarma.
The move was a mostly subterranean one with the SAA capturing a chain of tunnels and trenches that connect militant positions between western Ayn Tarma and central Ayn Tarma.
Furthermore, the Syrian Army also captured several building blocks in western Ayn Tarma. Regarding this advance, heavy clashes erupted that were to last for more than 6 hours in the area.
As a result of this particular engagement, five Islamist rebels were killed; after this they were forced to retreat. Army artillery units targeted the retreating militants, reportedly scoring direct hits on them.
Click here to see an interactive map of the region.