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Top Security Official: Khan Touman Proves Veracity of Iran’s Concerns about Ceasefire

9 May 2016 13:05



Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani underlined that the recent events in Syria’s Khan Touman region showed correctness of Tehran’s concerns about recruitment and strengthening of terrorist groups during the ceasefire in Aleppo.

“Since truce plan was put forward, the Islamic Republic of Iran, which didn’t oppose it in principle, reminded of its structural problems,” Shamkhani said, addressing the newly-elected Iranian legislators in Tehran on Sunday evening.

He referred to the occupation of Khan Touman region in Aleppo by terrorist groups in recent days, and said, “This event showed that the concerns raised by Iran were fully correct and based on the realities on the ground and that ceasefire would be merely an opportunity for the recruitment and reinvigoration of the terrorist groups by the governments which support them.”

His remarks came as Secretary of Iran’s Expediency Council (EC) Mohsen Rezayee warned the Takfiri terrorists in Syria to wait for a harsh revenge after killing a number of Iranian military advisors in Khan Touman region.

“Khan Touman in the Southern parts of Aleppo was liberated some months ago but the Takfiris misused the ceasefire, while no Syrian army warplanes and artilleries were active, and ambushed the Syrian forces and Iranian advisors and occupied that region few days ago,” Rezayee, also former commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), wrote on his Instagram page on Monday.

Noting that the Saudi and Turkish army forces were also deployed to backup the Takfiri terrorists, he said that the Syrian army and popular forces inflicted heavy toll and losses on militants before they could occupy Khan Touman.

Rezayee called the Takfiri terrorists as the Zionist regime’s protégés, and warned them to wait for a “harsh revenge”.

He expressed confidence that final victory belongs to the resistance, the Syrian nation and government and the Islamic Iran.

The Al-Nusra and units of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) claim to have taken back Khan Touman, but government forces say they are still in charge of key centers and blocks in the town.

The Syrian army alongside the National Defense Forces and Hezbollah fighters regained full control over the town of Khan Touman in December. Ever since then the city has fallen back to the terrorists twice, with the second time being this weekend.

Following an unsuccessful truce that was repeatedly violated by the terrorist groups, the Al-Nusra Front – the Syria arm of the Al-Qaeda terrorist group – could relocate some 20,000 terrorists to Northern Aleppo via Turkey’s soil to launch a large-scale attack on pro-government positions in several key cities in Aleppo province, including Khan Touman in the Southwest.

Military sources announced on Sunday that at least 400 terrorists have been killed or wounded in the pro-government forces’ offensives in the Southern part of Aleppo province in the last two to three days.

“The entire anti-terrorism movements and offensives of the Syrian army and its allies are based on military logic and are not based on any emotional decisions, that is why the government forces are carrying out their operations in Khan Touman battlefield step by step,” the sources told FNA, adding, “The most important matter is that the Syrian military forces have been capable of changing their positions in Khan Touman from defensive to offensive.”

“The Syrian soldiers have prevented Jeish al-Fatah, al-Nusra Front and Ahrar al-Sham from moving towards al-Zarbeh and the neighborhoods of Rashedeen 4 and 5 from the Western and Northeastern sides of Khan Touman,” they added.

“At least three tanks and several vehicles of the terrorist groups have been destroyed in the past two-three days and the Takfiri terrorists’ centers in Kahn Touman, al-Zarbeh, Damascus-Aleppo highway, al-Eis and Rashedeen 4 have been heavily bombed by the Russian and Syrian fighter jets,” the sources went on to say.

“In the meantime, the Syrian army’s artillery, missile and mortar units have been pounding the terrorists’ position in Khan Touman battlefield to weaken the defensive abilities of the militants and pave the group for safer and easier ground operation,” they added.

“The Syrian army tracked and targeted a US-made TOW anti-tank missiles launching-pad near Khan Touman, which ended in the destruction of the site and the killing of the entire militants in the site,” the source said.

Reports said earlier today that Syrian and Russian Air Force strikers, in a fresh series of joint combat flights, targeted the terrorist groups’ positions in a key neighborhood of the town of Kahn Touman in the Southern part of Aleppo province and inflicted heavy death toll on the militants.

Strongholds of the Takfiri terrorists in al-Rashedeen neighborhood’s Southern farms were massively targeted by the Syrian and Russian fighter jets.

The terrorists suffered a heavy death toll and their military equipment sustained major damage in the attacks.

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