The Syrian Air Force attacked the Islamic State HQ building near the Tabqa Airbase this morning, prompting the latter to respond with a barrage of mortar shells in the vicinity of the base. Violent firefights ensued at Safsaf Farms, with the Islamic State attempting to infiltrate the Syrian Arab Army’s frontline defense; it was repelled. Following the exchange, the Syrian Air Force bombarded the Tabqa Hospital that is used as an Islamic State base. The Islamic State withdrew north of Safsaf Farms, failing to advance on the second day of the siege.

The aftermath of the Syrian Air Force bombardment of the Islamic State HQ building.
The aftermath of the Syrian Air Force bombardment of the Islamic State HQ building.

Fighting is expected to continue in the coming hours, despite nightfall. The Islamic State has conducted previously, two successful night missions that resulted in the capture of Division 17 and Brigade 93 Bases in the Ar-Raqqa Governate. The Syrian Arab Army is heavily relying on its Air Force in this battle, as the loss of this base will lead to the absence of SAA troops in this province.

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