The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and National Defense Forces (NDF) are under a serious attack along the Khanasser-Aleppo Highway, as the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) continue their largest offensive on the Hama Governorate’s eastern countryside since their advance from the Tabaqa Military Airport last year.
On Sunday morning, ISIS conducted their most intense assault on the Syrian Arab Army’s defenses at the strategic city of Ithriyah, where they attempted to close the imperative Ithriyah-Salamiyah Road that the pro-government forces reopened the day before; this attack was later repelled by the Syrian Arab Army’s 66th Brigade of the 10th Tank Division.
Despite premature claims of ISIS’ capture of Ithriyah, the city still remains under the control of the Syrian Arab Army and National Defense Forces, as they attempt to clear the Khanasser-Aleppo Highway of the significant number of fighters from the terrorist group.
Yesterday, ISIS was able to obstruct the Khanasser-Aleppo Highway and the Ithriyah-Salamiyah Road; however, reinforcements from the predominately Palestinian pro-government militia “Liwaa Al-Quds” (Jerusalem Brigades) arrived just in time to recapture the aforementioned road and assist the Syrian Arab Army and National Defense Forces recapture several checkpoints along the Khanasser-Aleppo Highway.
The Khanasser-Aleppo Highway is the Syrian Government’s only supply route to the Aleppo Governorate; without, they would be required to rely on other methods to bring necessary provisions to this densely populated area of northern Syria.