ISIS has further expanded control in northern Hama and captured 4 more villages from Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda).
According to reports, ISIS members have captured the villages of Aliya, Suruj, Abu Marw and Umm Sahnk. Clashes have been also reported in Abu Khanadiq. This village remains contested.
Earlier this week, ISIS cells captured the villages of Abu Hariq, Ma’sarah, Abu Kusur and Tulayhat and started the new wave of expansions in the Hama countryside.
The situation once again shows the real level of control of the sides over the captured areas. While Hayat Tahrir al-Sham formally controls a large area in the northern Hama countryside, indeed, the group does not have enough forces to counter even ISIS cells.