by Staff Writers
Beirut (AFP) Aug 24, 2017
Syrian troops backed by Russian warplanes completely surrounded fighters of the Islamic State group in a vast central desert region on Thursday, a monitoring group said.
Advancing overnight, troops north and south of the Badiya desert area met up and seized Jabal Dahek, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
By encircling them, the government forces dealt a "strategic" blow to the IS jihadists, said the Britain-based Observatory.
They have been battling for months to retake the Badiya, which stretches from the country's centre to the Iraqi and Jordanian borders and has been held by IS since 2014.
Fighting was still raging between the two sides near Sukhnah, one of the main towns in the desert area.
Victory over IS in the region is seen as key to the army's hopes of retaking Deir Ezzor, the last Syrian province that remains nearly completely under IS control.
The jihadists have long surrounded government forces in the province's capital city, also named Deir Ezzor.
Analysts say the Syrian army needs to completely eliminate IS from the central part of the desert before it can attack Deir Ezzor, otherwise its troops would be exposed.
According to Fabrice Balanche, an expert on Syrian geography, the regime would have more than half of the country's territory under its control if it can drive IS out of the Badiya.
More than 330,000 people have been killed since Syria's conflict erupted in March 2011 with protests against President Bashar al-Assad.
Baghdad (AFP) Aug 22, 2017
At least 250 US-led air strikes have pounded the Syrian city of Raqa and surrounding territory in the past week, the coalition fighting the Islamic State group said Tuesday. Coalition spokesman Colonel Ryan Dillon told AFP that the air raids targeted the greater Raqa area. Activists and monitoring groups have reported that intensifying coalition bombardment of the city has left scores of ... read more
Space War News
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|