HAMA, SYRIA (9:35 P.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) launched a new offensive in the northern Hama countryside on Wednesday, targeting the key village of Ma’ardes, which is under the control of Jund Al-Aqsa (Syrian Al-Qaeda franchise).
The offensive began with the Russian Air Force conducting their first airstrikes over northern Hama since the commencement of the nationwide ceasefire agreement last month.
These airstrikes paved the way for the Syrian Armed Forces to storm the hilltop east of Ma’ardes, where they were engaged in a fierce battle for several hours with the jihadist rebels.
Ultimately, the Syrian Armed Forces would seize this unnamed hilltop, along with two checkpoints at the eastern outskirts of Ma’ardes.
With these sites captured tonight, the Syrian Armed Forces are now preparing for the final assault on Ma’ardes, which is expected to come from several axes around the village.
According to a military source in northern Hama, the Syrian Armed Forces managed to destroy 4 technical and 2 armored vehicles on Wednesday, including a BMP tank that belonged to the jihadist rebels.