Syrian army storms rebel strongholds near Damascus

Syrian army forces. File photo

ARA News 

DAMASCUS – Subsequent to fierce clashes with Islamist rebel groups, pro-regime army forces were able to seize control of several areas in Syria’s southern province of Damascus, killing a number of rebels during the fighting, activists reported on Wednesday.

Syrian army forces recaptured several areas from Islamist rebels [led by al-Qaeda offshoot Nusra Front] in the town of Zibdeen south-east of the Eastern Ghouta in Damascus countryside, according to local sources.

Speaking to ARA News in Damascus, rights activists Wissam al-Sheikh said that the regime’s army, supported by Iranian and Lebanese militias, seized control of several positions and military posts in the town of Zibdeen near Damascus after fierce clashes with Islamist rebels.

“This came amid artillery and missile bombardment by pro-regime forces on the town,” al-Sheikh reported. 

The source pointed out that the clashes resulted in the death of four soldiers from the regime’s army, while three rebels fighters were reported dead due to Wednesday’s clashes. 

“The rebel factions were able to destroy a BMP vehicle,” he told ARA News.

In the meantime, the pro-regime forces attempted to storm the town of Bala in a bid to distract the opposition factions amid fierce artillery and missile shelling on the area, according to local activists.

However, the armed opposition groups were able to deter the attack led by the regime’s army troops, forcing them to retreat from Bala.

This coincided with the arrival of new military reinforcements, including the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, to the regime’s army forces in the vicinity of the eastern and western Ghouta in order to start a major military operation to regain the region from Islamist rebel groups.

Reporting by: Haytham Mustafa

Source: ARA News

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