BEIRUT, LEBANON (7:58 A.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) has foiled a counterattack by the Ha’yat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) jihadist group and the Faylaq Al-Rahman Islamist faction that was launched in the direction of the Ayn Tarma Valley.
The SAA managed to repel an attack on the Driving School area and then forced militants to retreat back inside the town of Ayn Tarma, which was the launching point for their counter-assault. Despite only recently capturing the Ayn Tarma Valley area from militant forces, the SAA has managed to build trenches and fortify the area both quickly and extensively; this reality undoubtedly played a central role in the SAA’s successful defense of the area.
According to sources, the SAA’s sole objective behind the advance into the Ayn Tarma Valley was to cut the militant’s supply lines towards the Jobar District of eastern Damascus and not to storm the town of Ayn Tarma itself. Now the SAA will shift focus on Jobar; here it is expected that a heavy battle will erupt on multiple axes as the SAA attempts to pinch out the militant salient.
The SAA are working on severing all supply lines towards Jobar and then advancing into the district from various directions in order to split it into a number of smaller pockets. This represents an operational repeat of the Qaboun offensive. According to an SAA officer, the liberation of Jobar can be expected within a month.