Syrian Army Seizes Aleppo Villages, Takes Aim at Raqqa

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The Syrian army has continued to tighten its grip around Aleppo province, as it pushes for Daesh (ISIL) stronghold in Raqqa, official Syrian media and a Britain-based group close to Syria's foreign-backed opposition said.

ارتش سوریه

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Sunday that Syrian army backed by Russian airstrikes have captured 18 villages in Aleppo's eastern suburbs - giving them access to 40km of the highway between Aleppo and Raqqa.

The stretch of highway passes by the Kweires military airport that Syrian forces recaptured in November.

The latest army advance in Aleppo comes after days of deadly clashes against Daesh terrorists who control parts of northern Syria, including Raqqa province.

Syria's official news agency, SANA, said late on Saturday that the Syrian army "restored security and stability to a number of villages" in Aleppo's northeastern suburbs.

"Full control was established over the Thermal Power Station and a number of surrounding villages in the eastern countryside of Aleppo.

"Army units defeated the remaining remnants of Daesh terrorist organization from the Thermal Power Station and the surrounding areas 30km to the east of Aleppo," SANA reported on its website.

The Syrian army launched a major offensive from the north of Aleppo and captured several strategically important towns earlier this month.

Meanwhile, in Homs, reports said that at least 25 people were killed in twin car bombings early on Sunday morning.

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