On April 21, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and the Nation Defense Forces (NDF) launched a new attack on positions of Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) and its allies from the Free Syrian Army (FSA) in the eastern part of the northern Homs countryside pocket.
Syrian pro-government sources said the SAA artillery had shelled several positions of HTS and the FSA supporting the attack. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), nine fighters of HTS and its allies were killed in the SAA shelling.
Meanwhile, the HTS-linked news agency Iba’a confirmed that HTS fighters had repelled the attack by the SAA. Several SAA soldiers were reportedly killed and injured in the clashes.
Move rover, the FSA group “Jund Badir” announced that its fighters had destroyed two T-62 tanks of the SAA with ATGMs on the eastern front of the pocket.
The SAA launched a military operation against militants in the northern Homs countryside pocket on April 15. However, they failed to achieve any major progress as no elite units, like the Tiger Forces or the 4th Division, were involved in the advance.
A new round of negotiations between the Damascus government and the local negotiation committee of the northern Homs countryside will supposedly be held on April 22. However, many opposition sources doubted that the militants will attend the negotiation after they had successfully repelled the April 21 SAA attack.