The agency quoted army sources as saying that at least 50 terrorists had been killed and many more were wounded after Syrian troops repelled a Daesh assault on government positions in the two key villages of Kafr Sakeer and Babbenes in Aleppo.
FARS reported that the Syrian Army and the NDF had already liberated most of the province from the terrorists, who are currently embroiled in "increasing internal clashes" on the restricted territories that are still under their control.
In another development, the Syrian forces staged an offensive on Al-Nusra Front terrorists in the central province of Hama. At least four terrorists were killed in the attack, sources said.
#SYRIA Russian ASF and Syrian AF didn't make strikes on units, which joined ceasefire and informed Rusian or US Centres about their location— Минобороны России (@mod_russia) 20 марта 2016 г.
The Syrian Army attacked the terrorists' strongholds near the village of Qantara in response to the Al-Nusra Front's unsuccessful advance on the army-held neighboring village of Tall ad-Dirrah, according to FARS. The attack came a day after scores of Al-Nusra terrorists were killed in fighting on the outskirts of Tall ad-Dirrah.
"If the Syrian Army and their allies capture Qantara village from Al-Nusra, this will further enable a push southwards along the strategic al-Assi river into the northern sections of Homs province where terrorist forces are now in control," FARS quoted a military source as saying.
Syria has been mired in a civil war since 2011, with forces loyal to the country's President Bashar Assad fighting a number of opposition factions and extremist groups, including Daesh and the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front, which have been blacklisted as terrorist organizations by many countries, including Russia.
#SYRIA Military force will be used against armed groups only after receiving evidence of systematic violations of obligations taken by them— Минобороны России (@mod_russia) 21 марта 2016 г.
In February 2015, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 2268, endorsing a Russia-US agreement on the cessation of hostilities in Syria; the ceasefire came into force shortly thereafter, on February 27.
Between September 30, 2015 and March 14, 2016, the Syrian Army's anti-terror efforts were backed by an extensive Russian air campaign. During that period, more than fifty Russian warplanes, including Su-24M, Su-25 and Su-34 jets, executed precision airstrikes on Daesh and Al-Nusra targets in Syria at the behest of President Assad.
Moscow will, however, maintain a military presence in Syria, although a deadline for a complete pullout has not yet been announced. Putin also indicated that Russian forces will remain at the port of Tartus and Hmeymim Airbase.