The battle for the strategic desert city of Palmyra (Tadmur) has intensified over the last 48 hours, as both the Syrian Armed Forces and the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) trade offensives in this tug-of-war fight for control of the east Homs countryside.
Unlike the previous days, ISIS was first to strike this morning, targeting the Syrian Arab Army’s (SAA) front-line defenses with 5 VBIEDs (vehicle borne improvised explosive device), all of which were destroyed by the government forces before they could reach their intended destinations.
The primary targets for the ISIS terrorists this morning were Point 939 and Jabal Hayyal’s southern rim; these attacks were all repelled by the Syrian Armed Forces.
According to an Al-Masdar field correspondent, dozens of ISIS fighters were reportedly killed and a number of pick-up trucks that were mounted with anti-aircraft machine guns were destroyed during the assault on Point 939.
Following ISIS’ failed assault, the Syrian Arab Army’s “Tiger Forces” – backed by the Desert Hawks Brigade and Hezbollah – carried out a powerful assault near Point 700, killing several enemy combatants while inching closer to the Qatari Royal Villa.
Currently, the Syrian Armed Forces and their allies are steadily advancing towards the city of Palmyra; it is very likely that their assault with continue to increase in size as more reinforcements arrive.