BEIRUT, LEBANON (12:20 P.M.) – For the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), 2017 has arguably been the best year of the war for them and their allies, as they have liberated a large chunk of territory from both the rebel and Islamic State (ISIS) forces.
First Half of the Year
Beginning with east Aleppo, the Syrian Arab Army was able to impose full control over the eastern countryside of the province, expelling the Islamic State to the southwestern countryside of the Al-Raqqa Governorate.
Once east Aleppo was secured, the Syrian Army continued their operations in central Syria, liberating Palmyra, Rusafa, and eventually Al-Sukhnah after a massive operation in coordination with their allies from Hezbollah and Russia.
Meanwhile, on the Lebanese border, the Syrian Army and Hezbollah finally sealed the Lebanese-Syrian border after more than six years of war.
Second Half of the Year
Once the Lebanese border was sealed, the Syrian Army shifted their attention to Deir Ezzor, central Syria, and the Jordanian border.
Since launching their Jordanian border offensive, the Syrian Army has captured more than 8,000 square kilometers of territory in the Damascus and Al-Sweida governorates.
At the central Syria front, the Syrian Army has fully cleared the eastern countryside of the Hama Governorate and almost all of the Jubb Al-Jarrah District of Homs, leaving only a small Islamic State pocket in eastern Homs.
Perhaps the most important advance made in the Deir Ezzor Governorate, as their forces lifted the siege on the provincial capital and liberated the Islamic State stronghold of Al-Mayadeen.
The maps above illustrate the 57,000 square kilometers of territory that the Syrian Army has recovered this year; they still have over 37,000km left to go before they clear the last ISIS pocket in Syria.