Syria in Past 24 Hours: 30 Civilians Killed, Wounded in US-Led Coalition Airstrike in Raqqa
The US-led collation fighter jets bombed heavily a village in Northern Raqqa, killing 10 civilians and wounding 20 more, local sources confirmed.
The sources said that 10 civilians were killed and 20 more were injured in coalition air raids in the village of al-Salehiyeh, adding that the attack inflicted major damage on people’s properties too.
Also, local sources in Northeastern Syria reported that the ISIL has increased pressure on Raqqa city’s civilians to pay more tax following the rapid advances of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in the province and sharp reduction in the terrorist group’s income.
The sources said that ISIL militants have forced shopkeepers and businessmen in Raqqa to pay taxes of the next two months in advance.
They further said that a large number of ISIL fighters have not received any money as monthly salary for several months, adding that long delay in paying salaries has caused the ISIL fighters to be in doubt about remaining in the group and has weakened their abilities in the battlefields.
Also in the past 24 hours, a large number of fresh Kurdish fighters have arrived in regions South of Lake Assad near al-Tabaqa city to join their comrades to drive ISIL out of al-Tabaqa dam and city.
A local source confirmed on Wednesday that fresh fighters of the Manbij Military Council (MMC) crossed Lake Assad on ferries to join their allies in the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) as they prepare to attack ISIL’s last positions at the al-Tabaqa Dam.
He further said that since the ISIL still controls the Southern sector of the al-Tabaqa Dam, along with some territory in two suburbs North of al-Tabaqa city, the SDF will need additional manpower to drive out the remaining pockets of terrorists occupying this area.
The source underscored that with their Western Raqqa pocket quickly collapsing, the ISIL will likely hold-out for only a few more days at the Tabaqa Dam before they are finally overrun by the SDF fighters and their allies.
The ISIL terrorists failed again to break through the Syrian Army troops’ positions in Eastern Hama, leaving behind a number of forces dead and a large volume of equipment destroyed.
The army soldiers engaged in fierce clashes with ISIL in Eastern Hama and repelled the terrorists’ attack on the pro-government forces’ positions along the road connecting al-Salamiyah town to Ithriya town, destroying several vehicles and killing a number of terrorists.
In the meantime, the army units clashed fiercely with ISIL in Wadi al-Azib region East of al-Salamiyah, destroying two military vehicles and killing their crew.
Military sources confirmed on Wednesday that the first phase of the Syrian Army troops’ anti-terrorism operation to restore sustainable security to the border with Iraq has ended successfully as projected military objectives have been met.
The sources said that the army soldiers managed to advance against terrorists almost 45km, capturing al-Saba’a al-Bayar region 120km Northeast of Damascus and two strategic hills of Rajm al-Hama and Rajm Abu Qabar in Damascus province.
Also on Wednesday, a well-informed military source disclosed that the Syrian Army troops and the Lebanese Hezbollah Resistance Movements are getting ready to carry out an imminent large-scale operation against ISIL in Central Syria.
The source said that the army troops and Hezbollah forces will participate in a massive operation in Central Syria as the de-escalation zones agreement frees up hundreds of fighters across the war-hit country to move to other areas.
Hezbollah fighters have accompanied vastly the army soldiers in anti-terrorism operations in Aleppo province and in Eastern Homs, the source underlined, adding that they have played very crucial role also in the restoration of security to the Syria-Lebanon borders.
Local sources said on Wednesday that hundreds of gunmen and their family members will be evacuated from Barzeh district in line with the implementation of an evacuation deal concluded between the Syrian Army and the militants.
The sources confirmed that almost 2,000 gunmen and their family members will leave Barzeh district for Northern Syria and militant-held region in Eastern Ghouta.
They added that the third phase of the evacuation deal will be done next Sunday.
The Syrian Army dispatched a large number of forces with heavy military equipment to Eastern Homs to take part in an imminent operation to lift the siege on pro-government forces in Deir Ezzur, field sources said Wednesday.
The sources said that tens of heavy military vehicles, tanks, missile launchers, cannons and hundreds of soldiers and the Lebanese Hezbollah fighters have left de-escalation zones in Northern Hama for Badiyeh (desert) Palmyra to participate in an imminent large-scale operation to end ISIL presence in Deir Ezzur province.
In the meantime, a military column, including several vehicles, have reached East of Palmyra city, North of al-Sha’er oilfield and East of Jubb al-Jarrah region in Eastern Homs.
Also in the past 24 hours, the Syrian Army forces engaged in fierce clashes with ISIL and repelled their offensive on the pro-government forces’ defense lines in Deir Ezzur’s military airports, killing and wounding a number of terrorists.
The army soldiers clashes fiercely with ISIL and fended off their attack on Deir Ezzur’s airbase, inflicting major casualties on the terrorists.
The army’s missile units, meantime, targeted a tank of the ISIL in al-Maqaber (cemetery) region in the Southwestern outskirts of Deir Ezzur, killing the tank’s crew.
In the meantime, the Syrian Air Force carried out several heavy attacks on ISIL’s movements and positions in the town of al-Muhassan and the villages of Marat and Abu Omar, destroying several positions and killing a large number of terrorists.
Local sources in the border town of Albu Kamal reported that ISIL hanged a civilian in al-Fiha square for unknown charges.
Military sources confirmed on Wednesday that the Syrian Army troops, backed up by the Russian Air Force, have started a large-scale operation in Eastern Aleppo and managed to drive ISIL out of more positions.
The sources said that the army soldiers stormed ISIL’s defense lines in Eastern Aleppo and managed to capture the township of al-Mahdoum after killing and wounding a number of terrorists.
They added that after implementation of the de-escalation zones agreement and ban on combat flights in some provinces, the Russian warplanes concentrated on Eastern Aleppo battlefields and targeted ISIL centers in Maskana plain, killing a large number of terrorists.
The sources went on to say that the fresh phase of the army’s anti-ISIL operation has started after weeks of delay, adding that over 200 villages, town and townships were freed in previous operation of the army in Eastern Aleppo.
They pointed out that the army has a plan to capture Jarah airport and Maskana plain and then will move towards Raqqa province’s border with Aleppo.
A local official said that 1,500 gunmen and their family members will be evacuated from al-Wa’er district for Northern Aleppo.
Homs Governor Genera Talal al-Barazi confirmed that the ninth group of militants that have turned down the government’s peace offer will leave al-Wa’er on Wednesday.
He further said that a sum of 1,500 people, including 300 up to 400 gunmen are to leave the district, adding that the last phase of the evacuation of gunmen and their family member will be implemented before May 20.
Also on Wednesday, opposition groups’ media sources confirmed that the Syrian Air Force has bombed terrorists’ concentration centers heavily along the border with Jordan in retaliation for the militants’ attack on pro-government forces in the region.
The sources said that terrorists of Aswad al-Sharqiyeh and Liwa Shohada al-Quaryatayn attacked the Syrian Army troops’ positons and engaged in fierce clashes with the army soldiers in al-Saba’a Bayar region and Zaza checkpoint in Badiyeh (desert) al-Shamiyeh between Southeastern Homs with Eastern Qalamoun to advance towards the road that goes to al-Tanf border-crossing with Iraq.
They added that the army aircraft carried out a retaliatory attack and bombed the Aswad al-Sharqiyeh terrorists’ positons heavily at the border with Jordan.