The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) has gained significant ground in capturing the key town of Maarat al-Numan in the province of Idlib by taking suburban villages to its north, Syrian media reported on Monday
CAIRO (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 27th January, 2020) The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) has gained significant ground in capturing the key town of Maarat al-Numan in the province of Idlib by taking suburban villages to its north, Syrian media reported on Monday.
According to Damascus-based newspaper al-Watan, the central government's forces "are within hundreds of meters" of Maarat al-Numan after a fierce battle saw them liberate numerous villages to the north-west of the town, including al-Dana, Babila and Maasaran.
The newspaper added that the SAA had taken control over parts of the M5 Damascus-Aleppo highway, thereby cutting off the main connection between terrorist-held Maarat al-Numan and Saraqib, both of which are strategic towns in Idlib.
Al-Watania Tahrer Front, a militant group settled in western Aleppo, said on Twitter it stopped an onslaught from the SAA by "killing and injuring dozens of their rank." Media loyal to Damascus said the same of the other side.
The Syrian Armed Forces General Staff announced on December 24 that more than 40 villages in Idlib were liberated from terrorists during a military operation and called on civilians to leave the settlements.
Syrian President Bashar Assad has regained control over much of the Syrian territory with the help of Russia and Iran. Idlib province remains the last bastion of about 10,000 terrorists from various groups, according to the UN Analytical Support and Sanctions Monitoring Team.