On Monday morning, the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) attempted to advance their positions inside the Hama Governorate’s eastern countryside after a successful series of attacks over the weekend that put them in position to disrupt the Syrian Arab Army’s main supply route to provincial capital of the Aleppo Governorate.
The terrorist group attacked several checkpoints belonging to the Syrian Arab Army and National Defense Forces (NDF) along the road to the town of Sheikh Hilal in an attempt to broaden their control over the Salamiyah-Raqqa Road that runs through the imperative town of Ithriyah; if successful, ISIS would block the supply road the Syrian Armed Forces use to reach the Khanasser-Aleppo Highway.
Luckily for the Syrian Armed Forces, they were able to repel the terrorist attack on the road to Sheikh Hilal, despite the ferocity of ISIS’ assault on their positions; this included multiple suicide attacks using BMP armored vehicles.
Following ISIS’ failed infiltration attempt into Sheikh Hilal, the Syrian Arab Army’s 66th Brigade of the 11th Tank Division – in coordination with the National Defense Forces from Al-Salamiyah and the Palestinian pro-government militia “Liwaa Al-Quds” (Jerusalem Brigades) – launched a counter-assault around 6:30 P.M. (Damascus Time) to recover their lost points along the Salamiyah-Raqqa Highway and the Khanasser-Aleppo Highway.
The Syrian Armed Forces have started their large-scale counter-assault in east Hama; however, there have been no reported gains yet (other than the recapture of the Ithriyah-Sabourah Road), as they target the Al-Bashiri Farms, Ithriyah Checkpoint, and the Majabel Checkpoint near the town of Ithriyah.