The Syrian Arab Army’s (SAA) 5th Armored Division has launched a counter-offensive in the northern Dara’a countryside that is geared at retaking the rebel-controlled villages of Kafr Shamis, Zimreen and Deir ‘Adass, following their success at the Rif Dimashq village of Sa’sa.
The offensive began on Saturday morning, when the 5th Division – in coordination with reinforcements from the 7th Infantry Division – carried out a fierce assault on Deir ‘Adass; this attack resulted in the capture of Al-Dinaaji – a village north of Deir ‘Adass.
In the village of Ghazali, a violent confrontation broke-out between the 5th Armored Division and a militant group loyal to the Free Syrian Army (FSA); this began when the former attacked the militants at the Air Defense Base, forcing them to withdraw from their positions after a fierce firefight.
The Al-Qaeda linked “Al-Nusra Front” (Jabhat Al-Nusra) continued their offensive north of Sheikh Miskeen, attacking the 5th Division at the villages of Al-Dilli and Al-Sahliyyah. The firefights in these villages have intensified over the last 3 days, despite the SAA’s attempt to reclaim the rebel-held “Brigade 82” headquarters.
A rebel contingent loyal to the FSA attempted to capture an SAA checkpoint east of the city of Inkhil – the attack was repelled after almost 2 hours of fierce clashes and persistent air raids by the Syrian Arab Air Force (SAAF).
The 5th Division attacked a group of Al-Nusra Front fighters at the village of Qarfa, killing 8 enemy combatants and capturing a bulldozer. 6 out of the 8 militants were unknown; however, the 2 that were identified were the following: “‘Anas Khodor Al-Hariri” and “Zayd Bilaal Abu ‘Umran.”
According to field reports from Dara’a, a number of other cities and villages experienced violence; this includes ‘Umm Daraj (at Hadeeqa Arba’een), Busra Al-Sham (near the amphitheater), ‘Itman, Jasseem (at Qasr ‘Idriss), Naamer, Al-Maseefra (at the financial building), Al-Muslimiyya, and Al-Jeezi.