01:20 GMT08 August 2020
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    By pushing back militants towards the border with Homs province, the Syrian Army has reportedly managed to create a large buffer-zone along the key road linking the cities of Hama and al-Salamiyah in the country's southeast.

    The Syrian Army and the National Defense Forces (NDF) created a large buffer-zone along the key road linking the cities of Hama and al-Salamiyah in east-central Syria, according to the Iranian news agency FARS.

    "Over the last 72 hours, the Syrian army and the NDF have not only captured 11 villages in Southeastern Hama, but also officially reopened the Hama-Salamiyah Road, that is the primary link between these two important cities in central Syria," the army sources said.

    The reopening of the road came shortly after the Syrian troops and the NDF launched a new offensive on the militant groups in the southern areas part of Hama province.

    In this photo taken on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015, Syrian army rocket launchers fire near the village of Morek in Syria
    © AP Photo / Alexander Kots, Komsomolskaya Pravda
    In this photo taken on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015, Syrian army rocket launchers fire near the village of Morek in Syria

    The Syrian forces reportedly managed to drive al-Nusra Front militants out of more territories in Hama's south, destroy their strongholds and seize back a key village after fierce fighting with the terrorists.

    The sources said that "the Syrian pro-government forces established full control over the village of Um Rqeibeh in the southern part of Hama and western countryside of Salamiyah after hours of battling with the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front."

    "Al-Nusra Front militants suffered a heavy death toll and their military equipment was destroyed as a result of the attack," the sources added.

    The Syrian Army's new offensive came amid the ongoing Russian  air campaign in Syria, which was launched on September 30, 2015, when more than fifty Russian warplanes, including Su-24M, Su-25 and Su-34 jets, commenced precision airstrikes on Islamic State targets in Syria at the behest of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

    Late in December 2015, Russian Defense Ministry officials said that Russian fighter jets had carried out a total of 5,240 sorties since the start of the air operation against Daesh in Syria.


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    road, offensive, militants, army, troops, Al-Nusra Front, Syria
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