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Turkish Air Force hammers northern Aleppo for second straight day

Posted: 10 Feb 2018 12:08 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (10:00 A.M.) – For the second day in a row, the Turkish Air Force has conducted a large number of airstrikes over the northern countryside of the Aleppo Governorate.

Led by their F-16s, the Turkish Air Force carried out airstrikes over a number of areas in northern Aleppo, today, including the Afrin region and Mennagh Airbase.

While the Turkish Air Force pounded these areas, the Euphrates Shield forces launched another powerful attack on the northwestern corridor of the Aleppo Governorate’s Afrin region.

The Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army troops are attempting to take hold of Rajou, which is a strategic district currently under the control of the Kurdish-led People’s Protection Units (YPG).

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Second major confrontation between Syria, Israel ongoing in Damascus

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 11:42 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (3:20 A.M.) – For the second time today, the Israeli Air Force and Syrian Air Defense are battling one another within in the souwthwestern countryside of Damascus.

According to a military source in Damascus, the Israeli Air Force launched a powerful attack in southwestern Damascus, targeting the Jabal Mana’ area near the town of Al-Kiswah.

In particular, the Israeli airstrikes were concentrated on the 104th Brigade’s base that is located at this mountaintop.

The source continued that several Israeli rockets struck the Syrian military’s positions at Jabal Mana’, causing several explosions that could be heard throughout the Syrian capital.

In response to this attack, the Syrian Air Defense has fired a plethora of surface-to-air missiles towards the Israeli rockets in an attempt to thwart the assault.

While some rockets were intercepted by the Syrian Air Defense, the majority struck their intended targets.

The Syrian Air Defense and Israeli Air Force are still involved in a heated battle in southwestern Damascus, as the latter’s rockets continue to pound the Jabal Mana’ area.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: Israel attacks western Damascus after downing of F-16

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 11:14 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (9:00 A.M.) – Moments ago, the Israeli Air Force fired several missiles towards the western countryside of Damascus, targeting the Al-Kiswah area near the Iranian base.

According to a local journalist in Damascus, the Israeli missiles managed to score some direct hits, while others were intercepted by the Syrian Air Defense.

No further details are available at this time.

Earlier today, the Syrian Air Defense downed an Israeli F-16 after it entered Syrian airspace; both pilots managed to eject in the northern countryside of Galilee.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Syrian military says Israeli drone downed over western Damascus

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 10:38 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:25 P.M.) – The Syrian military says their forces downed an Israeli drone over the western countryside of Damascus shortly after the Israeli F-16 crashed in northern Galilee.

Initially, it was believed the Syrian Air Defense downed another warplane over Syria; however, the military clarified it was an Israeli drone that was seen flying from the occupied Golan Heights to western Damascus.

No further details have been released regarding the downed drone.

Today’s confrontation with the Israeli F-16 marks the first time during this war that the latter has lost an aircraft after entering Syrian airspace.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Syrian Air Defense on high alert after downing of Israeli jet

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 10:23 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:05 A.M.) – Syrian Air Defense units are on high alert after their forces downed an Israeli F-16 near the occupied Golan Heights, a military source in Damascus told Al-Masdar this morning.

The Syrian military expects Israel to retaliate in the coming hours, with the targeted area likely being some airbase in the western part of the countryside.

This incident along the border marks the first time during this war that an Israeli warplane has gone down after entering Syrian airspace.

Israel alleges that their downed aircraft was targeting an Iranian drone before it went down; however, the Syrian military has taken credit for the downing of the F-16.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: Syrian forces down Israeli fighter jet near occupied Golan Heights

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 09:48 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (7:30 A.M.) – At approximately 6:30 A.M. this morning, an Israeli F-16 fighter jet was shot down while flying over the western countryside of Damascus.

According to preliminary reports from Damascus, the F-16’s pilots were able to eject from their planes after it was struck by an anti-aircraft missile.

The two pilots are safe and landed in Israeli territory.

Israeli media claims the F-16 was downed by an Iranian drone that was flying along the Israeli-Syrian border; however, pro-government media claims the aircraft was downed by the Syrian Air Defense.

The downing of this Israeli F-16 marks the first time during this war that an Israeli warplane has been shot down.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

[Graphic 18+] HTS security chief, bodyguards killed in Jisr Al-Shughour

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 09:17 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (7:00 A.M.) – The security chief of Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham was killed on Friday after unknown assailants opened fire on his vehicle with assault rifles.

According to Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham activists, their security chief was traveling inside the Idlib Governorate city of Jisr Shughour on Friday, when his vehicle was ambushed by well-armed assailants.

In addition to the death of the security chief, four of his bodyguards were also killed in the attack.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Below are the photos released by pro-HTS media of their fallen chief and his bodyguards:

HTS media
HTS media
HTS media
HTS media
HTS media


Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Iraqi Kurdish force systematically executed hundreds of captured Daesh fighters- HRW report

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 08:43 PM PST

Iraqi Kurdish soldiers have been accused of conducting mass executions of captured Daesh fighters by Human Rights Watch (HRW.) The alleged massacre occured after a clash between the two groups near the Iraqi-Syrian border in late August through early September.

HRW said on Friday that Kurdish Peshmerga fighters detained Daesh fighters at a school in Sahel al-Maliha, a town 45 miles northwest of Mosul — the site of one of the last major battles against Daesh in Iraq. Coalition forces, including many Kurdish fighters, wrested control of the city from Daesh in July 2017.

“The evidence suggests that Asayish security forces [the Kurdistani security force] conducted mass executions of captured [Daesh] suspects night after night for a week, perhaps killing scores or even hundreds of male detainees,” said Lama Fakih, HRW’s deputy Middle East director in the statement.

“Iraqi and KRG [Kurdish Regional Government] authorities should urgently and transparently investigate the allegations of mass executions and hold those responsible to account.”

HRW was not able to find any witnesses to confirm their report, but a retired Asayish fighter told them that he had spoken to Peshmergas who had participated in the mass executions.The former fighter, who went by the pseudonym “Nadim,” said he was told by one of the Asayish that they had executed at least 170 captives, possibly more.

“Because the mass grave site is located within the flood zone of the Mosul Dam reservoir, it is critically important to urgently allow international forensic experts to conduct a detailed exhumation of the site before seasonal rains fill the reservoir again later this year,” the HRW report said.

Asayish leaders denied the report when asked about it. Kurdish official Dindar Zebari said that in their report of the incident, the Asayish claimed to have been chasing the militants as they were trying to flee across the Syrian border.

The bodies discovered by HRW were from that battle, Zebari added. “The corpses of the killed [Daesh] members in this fighting were probably brought to one place to be buried,” he said.

But HRW cast their doubts on the Peshmerga version of the events. They argued that the bodies were discovered around 25 miles from the site of the alleged battle, and the conditions of the corpses did not suggest that they were killed in pitched combat.

“This explanation does not match the state the bodies were found in, shot in the head” and buried “in a solitary desert area, far from where any fighting had occurred,” the watchdog group said.

Mosul acted as the de facto capital of Daesh’s presence in Iraq while they remained a territory-holding entity. The nine-month-long campaign to retake the city heralded the beginning of the end for Daesh, as they lost the last of their Iraqi territory in December 2017.

However, Daesh survives as a guerrilla and terrorist group. Their highest profile attack since then was in mid-January when a series of suicide bombings in Baghdad left 27 dead.
Source: Sputnik

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Syrian Army captures important sites inside east Damascus

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 08:23 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:00 A.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) resumed their advance in the eastern suburbs of Damascus last night, targeting the jihadist defenses at both Arbeen and Harasta.

Led by their 4th Mechanized Division, the Syrian Arab Army advanced along the Arbeen axis after securing the Jordanian-Lebanese Company building, pushing their way past the ‘Abdel-Rahman Mosque.

According to a military source in Damascus, the Syrian Army managed to finally capture the Al-Nofos building, which is located in the northeastern sector of Arbeen.

Furthermore, the Syrian Army was able to destroy at least ten trenches and five tunnels that belonged to the jihadist rebels of Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham in the Harasta Orchards near Arbeen.

The source added that the Syrian Army should make more advances in the coming days, as the heavy bombardment has greatly weakened Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham’s resole in the area.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Palestinians clash with Israeli forces on ‘Day of Rage’ in Ramallah

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 06:31 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:00 A.M.) – Palestinian protesters clashed with Israeli forces in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Friday, on the tenth ‘Friday of Rage’ protest over US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Protesters hurled rocks at Israeli forces before being repelled back under a volley of tear gas.

Palestinian factions had earlier called for a ‘Day of Rage’ after the conclusion of Friday prayers, the tenth since Trump’s decision.

Source: Ruptly

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Large Turkish military convoy reaches Syrian Army lines in Idlib (video)

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 05:51 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (3:20 A.M.) – A large Turkish military convoy entered the northern Syrian province of Idlib, tonight, Syrian opposition media outlets reported.

According to the reports, the Turkish Army convoy reached the eastern countryside of Idlib, where they decided to take up positions near the town of Tal Toukan.

Tal Toukan is now an observation point for the Turkish Armed Forces, as it is located near the Syrian Arab Army’s front-lines in the eastern countryside of the Idlib Governorate.

Below is a video that was released by the pro-opposition Edlib Media Center (EMC), tonight; it shows the Turkish convoy heading towards eastern Idlib:

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: Syrian Defense Ministry announces end of operations in Idlib, Aleppo

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 04:46 PM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (2:30 A.M.) – The Syrian Ministry of Defense announced, tonight, that all operations in the Idlib and Aleppo governorates have concluded after several weeks of fighting.

According to the spokesperson for the Ministry of Defense, the Syrian Arab Army completed their objectives in both Aleppo and Idlib after they successfully erased the Islamic State’s (ISIS) large pocket in this region of northern Syria.

The spokesperson added that the Syrian Army killed hundreds of Islamic State and Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham militants during their Idlib and Aleppo operations.

A military source told Al-Masdar News, tonight, that the Syrian Army is preparing for a long-term ceasefire with the rebel forces in this region of the country.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Syrian fighters defiant after US coalition airstrikes in Deir ez-Zor (video)

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 04:29 PM PST

Scores of Syrians fighting with the pro-government ‘National Forces’ spoke defiantly after being injured in airstrikes by the United States-led coalition fighting alongside the ‘Syrian Democratic Forces’ (SDF) in the region of Deir ez-Zor on Thursday.

Wounded Syrians were transported to a local hospital, where they were treated for both minor and serious injuries.

“We were in Khsham region, SDF forces, which are supported by Daesh [IS] and USA, attacked us and we fought them back,” said an injured soldier lying on a hospital bed, adding “We will not remain silent; we will fight them back until we liberate the last span of the lands of Syria. Syria is our country, it is not yours. God hail the Syrian Arab Army.”

“We were in Tabiyyah region. SDF forces infiltrated with the aircraft of the Coalition shelling ahead, but, thank God, we admirably fought them back,” added another injured fighter.

According to the Syrian state news agency SANA, the Syrian government has blamed the US-led coalition for targetting Syrian forces that were “fighting Daesh [IS] terrorists” in the Deir ez-Zor countryside, blaming the US for “supporting terrorism” and leaving “scores of people killed and others injured.”

According to claims by the United States government, pro-Syrian government forces (National Defence Forces) launched a so-called “unprovoked attack” against US-allied militants from the ‘Syrian Democratic Forces’ in the Deir ez-Zor area. In response, US coalition aircraft conducted airstrikes against the Syrian forces.

With regard to the airstrikes, the Russian Ministry of Defence reported that pro-government soldiers were attacked by US-led coalition forces, while conducting a reconnaissance search mission against so-called Islamic State (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL) militants near the former oil plant of al-Isba in the Deir ez-Zor area, with a total of 25 men wounded in the attack.

The Russian MOD statement went on to say that “the incident once again proved that the true goal of the continuous illegal presence of US forces in Syria is already not the fight against ISIS international terrorist group, but the capture and control of the economic assets belonging solely to the Syrian Arab Republic.”

Source: Ruptly

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Reports of offensive by US-led forces against Syrian Army in Deir Ezzor may be false – opposition media begins scare campaign

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 11:19 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (9:20 P.M.) – Earlier reports that US-led forces operating in the province of Deir Ezzor commenced an offensive against the Syrian Arab Army and allied paramilitary groups may very well be false. Furthermore, it appears that opposition media is attempting to stir tensions between pro-Damascus and US-backed forces throughout scare reporting.

On Friday, a variety of opposition media sources (some claiming to be local activists and others being general news) reported that Arab fighters of the US-led Deir Ezzor Military Council launched an artillery-backed assault the Syrian Army at the towns of Khasham and At-Tabiyyah on the east shore of the Euphrates River.

The reports were convincing – detailing that the better known US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces group was not participating and that the attack was purely the initiative of the Deir Ezzor Military Council (with whom the Syrian Army has had front-line skirmishes with before).

However despite this, official anti-ISIS coalition sources, Kurdish sources and Syrian Army sources remain – after many hours post-event – completely quiet on the matter.

This serves to now shed serious doubt on opposition claims – more so since US airstrikes reportedly took place and still no statement from official American military sources has been put forth.

Furthermore, the coordination of the reports and their detail seems to suggest that opposition media – in support of rebel groups (hostile to both US-backed forces and Syrian Army) – may be attempting to provoke conflict between pro-government and US-backed forces in the country’s east via scare reporting.

Updates to follow.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Assad, Iran support Kurdish forces against Turkey in Syria’s Afrin with key weapon systems – reports

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 10:31 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:30 P.M.) – Reports have been circulating for well over one week now that either the Damascus government or Iran or both are providing military support to Kurdish forces  currently battling it out against the Turkish Army and militias allied to it in Afrin.

The reports have been spread by both pro-government and opposition sources. Kurdish sources appear to be completely quiet on the matter (perhaps for obvious reasons).

In any case, reports argue that Iran is either directly providing weapons to Kurdish paramilitary groups or is providing weapons via Damascus-controlled logistical channels to Kurdish paramilitary groups.

The reports point out the sudden appearance of Iranian-built Toophan anti-tank missile systems in the hands of Kurdish forces as well as 107-mm artillery rockets which are characteristically used by Iranian (proper) and Iranian-backed forces.

Some reports have gone so far to say that man-portable surface-to-air missile systems have been provided by Iran and the Syrian government to Kurdish forces, but these are major accusation which require considerable evidence.

One thing that can be confirmed is that Damascus is allowing Kurdish forces in east Syria to transit through its territory to reach Afrin.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Graphic: Scores of ISIS militants slaughtered by Syrian Army during desperate break-out offensive in Hama

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 07:47 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:45 P.M.) – A desperate break-out offensive conducted by encircled ISIS forces in northeast Hama towards rebel-held areas in Idlib has left scores – apparently dozens – of terrorist militants dead after the Syrian Arab Army hammered their escape route with artillery and machine gun fire.

On Friday, many hundreds of entrapped Islamic State fighters (close to one thousand) in the stronghold of Suruj launched a do-or-die break-out offensive against the Syrian Army aimed at escaping towards rebel lines in eastern Idlib.

In the event, ISIS – concentrating a great amount of forces on a narrow section of front and achieving total surprise – actually managed accomplish this objective, battling its through over thirty kilometers of government territory within hours and bursting into rebel-held Idlib where it is now seizing towns from rival jihadist groups.

However, now it appears that the desperate break-out move resulted in the death of dozens of Islamic State terrorists, whose escape route was blasted by Syrian Army artillery and heavy machine gun fire. Furthermore, tens of vehicles belonging to ISIS – some armed, others logistical – were destroyed.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: Syrian Army establishes full control over key highway linking Hama to Aleppo

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 07:05 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:05 P.M.) – Forces of the Syrian Arab Army and pro-government paramilitary groups have established full control over a key highway linking the cities and Hama and Aleppo to each other.

On Friday, Syrian troops finished clearing the last ISIS-held towns along the highway linking Hama to Aleppo via the hilltop town of Tal ad-Daman, de facto gaining control over the entire motorway.

Whilst not as wide or developed as the better known M-5 highway, the Tal ad-Daman highway still represents a major road-link with Syria.

At the present time, the newly secured highway is off-limits to commercial use (mainly for security reasons) and will only be used by Syrian military forces to haul troops, supplies and equipment.

By gaining control of the Tal ad-Daman highway, government forces can now transit between Hama and Aleppo in less time (a matter of many hours) than if they were to use the Ithriyah-Khanasser-Aleppo road which for years was the only road connecting two cities for them – this communication line now becoming a auxiliary route.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: Turkey-led forces strike from new front capturing 3 towns in Syria’s Afrin as Kurdish forces fall back

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 06:25 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:25 P.M.) – The Turkish Army and allied Free Syrian Army militias have scored another big advance against Kurdish forces in Syria’s Afrin after opening a new front across the region’s southwest. So far three towns and villages have been captured as a result of the attack.

On Friday, Turkey-led forces renewed their offensive against Kurdish paras in Afrin, striking from the southwest (across the Turkish border) towards the town of Jandaris.

A new wave of Turkish airstrikes paved the way for pro-Ankara fighters to advance and capture the towns Safriyah, Iskan Arabi and Jaqla Fouqani within a matter of hours.

Furthermore, Free Syrian Army militias secured their gains by also taking the nearby hilltop area of Tell Nasiriyah from Kurdish forces.

By this advance, Turkey-led forces have put themselves in a good position to strike at the town of Jandaris (about five kilometers away from their current positions) which if captured will be the biggest accomplishment of Ankara’s Olive Branch operation to date.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Syrian Army keeps advancing in east Damascus despite heavy resistance from Islamist rebels

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 05:52 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (3:50 P.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) is currently involved in an intense battle with the Islamist rebels inside the eastern suburbs of Damascus.

Led by their 4th Division, the Syrian Army was able to score an important advance at the Arbeen front, as their forces entered this suburb for the first time in several weeks.

During the assault, the Syrian Army was able to capture the imperative mosque that was used by Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham as a military base in Arbeen.

Meanwhile, this morning, the Syrian Army and Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham are currently involved in a fierce battle at the Harasta Orchards.

The Syrian Army is attempting to advance at the Harasta Orchards, as their air force heavily bombards the surrounding area.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: ISIS advances towards rebel-held stronghold in south Idlib where 1,000 loyal terrorists await link-up

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 05:29 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (3:29 P.M.) – Islamic State militants, having recently broken-out from Syrian Arab Army encirclement in Hama province, are currently battling their way towards a key ISIS loyalist town in rebel-held southeast Idlib called At-Tamanaa where at least one thousand willing reinforcements await.

Most of the Islamic State terrorists who were in Hama (and are now in southeast Idlib), belong to an old affiliate group that was active inside rebel-held northwest Syria until February 2017 (when it was pushed to leave by Al-Qaeda-linked forces under the threat of all-out war) called Jund al-Aqsa.

The leader of the ex-Jund al-Aqsa ISIS fighters is Radwan Al-Bakri. The commander comes from At-Tamanaa. The town is a place where he not only recruited existing militants, but where he still has many loyalist sleeper agents awaiting the right moment to rise up and join ranks.

According to opposition sources, the town of At-Tamanaa has up to one thousand (some reports say several thousand) Islamic State loyalists present in it – themselves ex-Jund al-Aqsa fighters who since became sleeper agents after to militant faction was forced to leave rebel-held northwest Syria.

At the present time, ISIS has captured the towns of Umm Khalakhil, Luwaybidah and Musharifah (as reported by opposition sources) from rebels in southeast Idlib, meaning the terrorist group is around ten kilometers away from reaching At-Tamanaa with only four settlements in-between.

Updates to follow.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: US-led forces launch all-out offensive against Syrian Army in Deir Ezzor

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 05:04 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (3:04 P.M.) – Reports are coming in that US-backed forces have launched an all-out offensive against the Syrian Arab Army and allied paramilitary groups near two government-held towns in Deir Ezzor province.

Moments ago, opposition sources began to report that forces of the US-led Deir Ezzor Military Council began storming positions of the Syrian Army and National Defence Forces at the government-held towns of Khashim and Tabiyyah on the eastern shore of the Euphrates River as part of an determined assault to capture the settlements.

The assault by the Deir Ezzor Military Council is being backed up by artillery, however, so far no instances of airstrikes by coalition warplanes against positions of the Syrian Army and allied forces have been reported.

The Deir Ezzor Military Council is a completely separate entity from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). Rather than just receiving military support from the US-led coalition, its fighters – virtually all ethnic Arabs – are actually on the payroll of the US Department of State and under the direct strategic guidance of the Pentagon (quite like the Free Syrian Army mercenaries at Al-Tanf).

No gains by US-backed forces appear to have happened yet. Sources are stressing that the SDF is in no way involved in the offensive.

Updates to follow.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: Syrian rebels in panic mode after ISIS assaults them in east Idlib from Hama

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 04:20 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (2:19 P.M.) – Following the break-out of ISIS from almost certain doom in rural Hama, forces of the terrorist group – fighting their way west towards southeast Idlib – have now come into contact with rebel groups who, taken aback by the sudden assault, are currently in a state of panic.

On Friday morning, many hundreds of Islamic State militants trapped in town of Suruj in Hama province conducted a desperate break-out assault west of the stronghold.

Sources within ISIS – as quoted by EMN News – note that dozens of Syrian troops were killed in the sudden assault which was spearheaded by a number of car bomb attacks.

After several hours, Islamic State terrorists reached rebel lines in southeast Idlib province at the towns of Umm Khalakhil and Ard az-Zuzur according to opposition sources. Following this, local rebel forces descended into a state of panic.

In response to the attack, all available rebel fighters from the Free Syrian Army and Ha’yat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of Al-Qaeda) in the area have mustered an emergency defensive action and are currently shelling advancing ISIS militants with mortars, howitzers and 23-mm cannons. Reinforcements are undoubtedly flooding towards southeast Idlib at the present time.

Updates to follow.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Breaking: ISIS breaks-out into rebel-held Idlib after Syrian Army squeezes terrorist pocket to limit

Posted: 09 Feb 2018 03:23 AM PST

BEIRUT, LEBANON (1:23 P.M.) – Hundreds of Islamic State fighters have burst into rebel-held areas of Idlib province after the Syrian Arab Army, heavily focused on securing the terrorist group’s last stronghold in Hama, left its western flank exposed to a desperate break-out assault by jihadist militants.

On Friday morning, hundreds of ISIS militants trapped in the stronghold town of Suruj in Hama province conducted a sudden blitz assault west of the town.

Concentrating enough forces, taking advantage of having total surprise and fighting desperately to avoid annihilation, ISIS managed to blitz its way through over a dozen government-held villages, reaching rebel lines in southeast Idlib.

Although surprised by the attack against its western flank, the Syrian Army completed its original objective of seizing Suruj and the last villages near the fortress town after ISIS totally abandoned the area in its all-out push towards rebel-held Idlib.

According to EMN News, claiming to quote an inside ISIS source, the break-out battle between the terrorist group and the Syrian Army was ‘brutal,’ resulting in the deaths of dozens of troops.

Updates to follow.

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز

Egyptian Army launches major offensive against terrorists across country

Posted: 08 Feb 2018 10:49 PM PST

Egypt has been fighting jihadist insurgency in northern Sinai since the ouster of then-President Mohamed Morsi in 2013. A year later, Sinai’s indigenous militants pledged their allegiance to Daesh terrorist group.

The Egyptian Army has announced the launch of a major operation against Islamist militants across the country.

“The law enforcement forces began this morning implementing the comprehensive confrontation against the terrorist and criminal elements and organisations in northern and central Sinai,” an army spokesman said in a televised statement.

The spokesman added that the operation also includes other parts of Egypt such as the Delta and the western desert.

Egypt has been fighting jihadist insurgency in northern Sinai since the army overthrew then-President Mohamed Morsi in 2013. Police and security forces have frequently been the target of deadly attacks staged by Islamists in the area.

In 2014, Sinai’s indigenous militants pledged their allegiance to Daesh terrorist group. Since then, the Wilayat Sinai, the Daesh branch in Egypt, has claimed responsibility for a number of deadly attacks in the area.


Source: Sputnik

Source: AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز