On April 19, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies continued attempts to advance against the ISIS terrorist group in the direction of the al-Busairi crossroad southwest of the ancient city of Palmyra in the province of Homs. An intense fighting between government troops and ISIS terrorists were reported in the areas of Sawanah and the Sawanah junction.
On April 18, government forces retook the Abu Kala Dam area from ISIS in the northwestern countryside of the ancient city.
It’s intereresting to note that the government advance northwest and southwest of Palmyra is actively supported by Syrian warplanes and helicopters. This allows to suggest that the Ash Sha’irat airbase that had been hit by US cruise missiles is almost fully operational.
The Ash Sha’irat airbase is a key Syrian Arab Air Force (SAAF) site involved in operations in the provinces of Homs and Hama. If it’s destroyed, the SAAF will lost a major part of its capabilities to provide support to government forces in these areas.
The Syrian Defense Ministry released a video of the advance in the Palmyra countryside: