DAMASCUS, Syria, The Syrian army has started an operation against the rebels, in the northern countryside of the central province of Hama, the pro-government al-Watan newspaper reported, Tuesday.

Buoyed by artillery shelling and air strikes, the army succeeded over the past hours in capturing three towns and a strategic hilltop in the northern and northwestern countryside of Hama.

The military operation aims to eliminate the rebels of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) from the northern countryside of Hama.

Meanwhile, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, the Syrian army captured, after midnight Tuesday, the strategic Tal Othman area in northern Hama after battles with the rebels.

Russian war planes conducted 26 air strikes after midnight Tuesday, it said.

The escalation between the army and the rebels in Hama lasted eight days.

Areas in the countryside of Hama, Idlib and the western countryside of Aleppo are included in the deescalation zones deal, which was reached between Russia and Turkey in Sept, 2018.

The deal failed to materialise as the HTS, umbrella group of the al-Qaeda-linked Nusra Front, expanded in Idlib and started attacks on Syrian military positions, instead of withdrawing from the designated zone which combines Idlib with Hama and Aleppo countryside.

It’s unclear yet whether the ongoing military operation will focus only on Hama countryside or expand to include Idlib, the last major rebel stronghold in Syria.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

syrianewsgazette.comNational news
DAMASCUS, Syria, The Syrian army has started an operation against the rebels, in the northern countryside of the central province of Hama, the pro-government al-Watan newspaper reported, Tuesday.Buoyed by artillery shelling and air strikes, the army succeeded over the past hours in capturing three towns and a strategic hilltop...