Syrian government forces have carried out a string of operations against foreign-backed Takfiri militants on the outskirts of Aleppo, establishing control over several hilltops and villages, a report says.
The advances roll back the short-lived gains from a massive militant offensive launched on Sunday to end the Syrian army's siege of eastern districts of the city.
The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Wednesday troops managed to recapture two hilltops and two small villages in the southwestern suburbs of Aleppo the previous night.
The observatory’s director, Rami Abdel Rahman, said Syrian government troops are launching counter-attacks to repel militant offensives, saying 50 Takfiri extremists and “dozens” of government soldiers have been killed during fierce clashes.
The pro-government al-Watan daily said government forces “advanced again south and southwest of Aleppo because of the major setbacks” that foreign-backed terrorists had received.
Government forces have liberated a number of key neighborhoods, including Bani Zeid, in Aleppo in recent weeks.
As the advances continue, a new video has emerged of a major cache of US- and Turkish-built weapons seized by the army in Bani Zeid.
The munitions include guided anti-tank missiles like BGM-71 TOW and relevant launchers which are the weapons of choice widely used by militants in the war.
Also on Wednesday, Syrian army soldiers, backed by allied fighters from popular defense groups, destroyed several terrorist hideouts on the eastern outskirts of the southwestern city of Suwayda, killing and injuring a large number of extremists.
Separately, scores of militants were killed and injured as government forces launched mop-up operations in the city of Dara’a.
Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The United Nations (UN)’s Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura estimates that over 400,000 people have been killed in the conflict.
Back in 2014, the UN said it would no more update its death toll for Syria because it could not verify the figures that it received from various sources.