The Syrian Arab Army’s 4th Mechanized Division liberated their first village in the west Raqqa countryside on Friday night after a violent battle with the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) near the Zakiyah Crossroad.
According to an Al-Masdar field correspondent in the area, the SAA’s 4th Mechanized Division liberated the village of Abu Al-Allaj after advancing eastward from the Zakiyah Crossroad on Friday evening.
As a result of this successful military operation, the Syrian Armed Forces are now within 35 km of the Tabaqa Military Airport in the Al-Raqqa Governorate’s western countryside.
The Tabaqa Military Airport was captured by the Islamic State forces during their large-scale Al-Raqqa offensive in early August of 2014.
Since the capture of the Tabaqa Military Airport, the Islamic State forces have attempted to expand their presence in east Aleppo and east Hama; however, the Syrian Army’s recent offensive has changed field situation.
Backing the Syrian Arab Army’s 4th Mechanized Division in west Raqqa are several pro-government paramilitary units, including the Desert Hawks, National Defense Forces (NDF), Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP), Syrian Marines, and Galilee Forces (Palestinian paramilitary).