BEIRUT, LEBANON (02:11 A.M.) – Forces of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and Hezbollah set up several fortified positions and small bases in the area around Al-Boudah village a few kilometres north-east of the Tanf border crossing, where US forces are stationed to train militants of the Free Syrian Army.
The Al-Boudah was captured by the SAA and its allies in a surprising move on June 9, after a sequence of airstrikes launched by the US Air Force prevented them from reaching their original target, the Tanf border crossing. With this achievement they effectively barred the FSA from further expanding their territory and cut off ISIS from Syria’s porous southern border with Jordan.
The following map courtesy of SyrianCivilWarMap shows the recently captured area:
In addition Syria can reopen a land route between Damascus and Baghdad as soon as control over the area is solidified. This would boost trade with Iraq and revive Syria’s economy currently in doldrums. Furthermore it facilitates weapons supplies from Iran to Hezbollah which previously had to be realised via plane.
Opposition sources claimed, that due to US pressure, SAA forces evacuated the area again, shortly after having captured the Al-Boudah village, but since then several videos were published, proving the lasting SAA presence in the area.
As Al-Masdar News reported on June 10 the Syrian Ministry of Defense published a video of SAA advancing in the area and fortifying the newly gained positions. Today another video was published by the Syrian state TV showing the SAA bringing heavy machinery including T90 tanks into the area.
Now a third video occurred, showing forces of the SAA and Hezbollah fortifying further positions and setting up a small base in the border region:
In total control over 20.000 square km has been gained in the latest advance and now needs to be solidified, before the second phase of this offensive can be launched. Then the SAA and its allies will push against the Islamic State (ISIS) towards Bo Kamal (north-east) and Deir Ezzor (north).