On Saturday, Assad’s forces attempted to regain what they lost in the southeastern Idleb countryside after an attack by opposition groups led by the National Front for Liberation, affiliated with the National Army.
On its official platforms on Sunday, the Front said that its fighters had repelled multiple attempts by Assad’s forces to advance and retake control of the town of Ajaz in the eastern Idleb countryside amid air and artillery fire.
Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham said on Telegram, “Russian warplanes and regime artillery are heavily targeting the towns of the southeastern Idleb countryside.”
Tahrir al-Sham said that rebel military action killed and wounded more than 110 fighters from Assad’s forces and destroyed a tank and disabled a rocket launcher.
Assad’s forces did not comment on the developments in the southern and eastern Idleb countryside.
Media close to the Syrian regime reported the Assad’s forces had repelled a “heavy” attack on the Ajaaz and Sarjah fronts in the southeastern Idleb countryside.
The fighting in the southeastern Idleb countryside coincided with the fighting on the al-Kabina front in the northern Lattakia countryside, which has been ongoing for about two months.
The areas taken by the opposition in the Idleb countryside include Ajaaz, Istabalat, Rasam al-Ward, and Sarouj.
The National Front said that the military operation killed and wounded dozens of fighters from Assad’s forces and captured weapons and ammunition.
The opposition attack came after an attempt by Russian forces to infiltrate the Ajaaz front and by regime forces to advance on areas in southern Idleb, including al-Mshairfeh, Ard al-Zarzour, and Umm al-Khalakhil.
These villages are considered the pillars of the defensive lines for the towns of Jarjanaz and al-Tah, which overlook Maarat al-Nu’man and the international Damascus-Aleppo highway.
According to the map of control one the ground, the attack by Assad’s forces on the southeastern Idleb countryside is concentrated on two fronts—the first on the town of al-Mshairfeh and the second on the Ard al-Zarzour front, which turned into a confrontation point.
The recent fighting in the southeastern Idleb countryside has pushed thousands of civilians to flee from a number of villages near the areas of the clashes. The Syria Humanitarian Response Team said that there was still heavy displacement from parts of the southern Idleb countryside, specifically the areas around Maarat al-Nu’man, with thousands of displaced families headed to relatively safe areas in northwestern Syria.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.