Soldiers from the 3rd Armored Division cross an open field after the Islamist rebels fled building ahead.

On Thursday morning, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) launched a large-scale offensive in the northern Aleppo countryside, targeting rebel controlled Al-Malaah Farms and the Handarat Refugee Camp near the strategic Al-Castillo Highway.

Initially, the Syrian Armed Forces were able to capture both Al-Malaah Farms; however, by dusk on Thursday, the rebel forces – led by the Syrian Al-Qaeda group “Jabhat Al-Nusra” – had recovered southern farms after almost 4 straight hours of fighting.

In addition to their attack on Al-Malaah Farms, the Syrian Armed Forces also launched an attack on the abandoned Handarat Refugee Camp, where rebel forces have turned this once thriving area into a military zone.

Once again, the Syrian Armed Forces were able to seize the factories and the eastern neighborhoods of Handarat Camp after a long battle on Thursday

However, the rebel forces were able to recover all of the points they lost to the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) at the Handarat Camp before sun down.

The first round of this large-scale offensive was similar to the previous offensives launched by the Syrian Arab Army; they pressed the enemy defenses to analyze their forces but withdrew before nightfall.

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Chuck Hicks
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Chuck Hicks

Is it me or does the SAA have new battle fatigues?

Ali Hamieh
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Ali Hamieh

No, it was only the Palestinians that participated in this offensive, maybe some other groups but definately not enough. This is probably just to weaken their defenses.

Nev
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Nev

The terrorists are using human shields. With this advance and retreat, the SAA is drawing more terrorists into their recovered areas where the air forces can destroy them.

Bleipriester
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Bleipriester

Third article with same content, AMN. Come on. Can you also please comment on this?
http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/world/al-nusra-militants-massin/2686852.html
Do you know something about this?