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Army troops capture strategic village north of Aleppo

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Syrian pro-government troops hold positions in the town of Ain al-Hanash near Aleppo on January 26, 2016. ©AFP

The Syrian army has gained control of a strategic village near the Turkish border in Aleppo amid a successful offensive against foreign-backed Takfiri militants in the northwestern province.

Government troops and allied forces seized back Hardatnin village located north of Aleppo city on Tuesday, the Arabic-language al-Ahed news website reported.

The report added that many militants were killed and injured in the army operation. However, there were no immediate reports on the exact number of casualties.

With the new gains, Syrian forces are primed to break through the territory held by militants and march on the strategic villages of Nubul and al-Zahraa northwest of Aleppo.

This November 11, 2015 photo, released by SANA, shows Syrian government troops walking inside the Kweiras air base, east of Aleppo. ©AP

The two villages are located on a highway that runs to the Syrian-Turkish border. More advances in the area could cut militant supply routes from Turkey to Aleppo.

The development comes a day after the Syrian army and popular forces recaptured the village of Tal al-Jabin, just north of Duwayr al-Zaytoun, another recently-liberated village in the same province.

This is the first major military operation north of Aleppo since the Russian air force began providing air cover to the armed forces operating on the ground last September.

The foreign-sponsored conflict in Syria, which flared in March 2011, has reportedly claimed the lives of more than 260,000 people and left over one million injured.

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