Syria, Hezbollah forces make advances in Zabadani city in Qalamoun
Syrian government forces and the fighters belonging to Lebanese resistance movement, Hezbollah, have gained the upper hand in the fight against the militants operating in and around the city of Zabadani in the border region of Qalamoun.
“Army forces in cooperation with the Lebanese resistance took control of the al-Jamaiyat neighborhood in western Zabadani and the al-Sultana neighborhood in the east of the city,” Syria’s officials news agency, SANA, said on Sunday, adding, “Operations are continuing with dozens of terrorists killed and wounded.”
The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed Syria’s advances in the area, saying that Syrian fighter jets have been bombarding the area since early morning.
The UK-based group added that at least 14 members of the Syrian and Hezbollah joint forces and 11 terrorists were killed in the clashes on Sunday.
Zabadani is the last city under the control of terrorists in the Qalamoun region on the Lebanese border.
On Saturday, Lebanese sources said Syrian ground forces had managed to enter Zabadani, 50 kilometers northwest of Damascus, after days of clashes in the area.
The ongoing battle in Zabadani is part of a wider operation launched by the Syrian forces and the resistance movement’s fighters on May 4, which has reportedly driven militants out of more than 90 percent of the territory previously controlled by them in the mountainous region.
Qalamoun, which straddles the Lebanese-Syrian border, was previously used by the al-Nusra Front militants for transferring weapons and ammunition into Syria, where they have been involved in acts of violence and terrorism.