On Saturday, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies captured the entire ISIS-held area in the eastern Homs countryside pocket, according to the Hezbollah media wing in Syria. The SAA killed or captured all ISIS fighters inside the pocket.
The east Homs countryside pocket had the size of 2000 square kilometers and was located between al-Sukhanah town and the al-Sha’aer gas field.
The SAA captured the entire area, including the following points: Hareth, Rodat al-Wahsh, al-Asfouryah, Khashm al-Minshar, Khashm Noyo, al-Ghuwyrs, al-Saydah, al-Jarf, al-Sahl, Khashm al-Hamdah, al-Labdah, Qatqat, Thanyat al-Safrah, Huwyah al-Ras, Khirbet al-Samouryah and al-Sateh.
According to the Hezbollah media wing in Syria, the SAA is now clearing the newly captured areas in the eastern Homs countryside from mines and IEDs planted by ISIS fighters.
Separately, the ISIS-linked news agency, Amaq announced that ISIS fighters recaptured Mukymen village in the eastern Hama countryside. Amaq added that 15 SAA soldiers were killed in ISIS counter attack.
According to pro-government sources Salba and Jib al-Albawi are also under attack now. ISIS is clearly trying to exploit the SAA weakness in the eastern Hama countryside to delay Deir Ezzor attack.
The SAA will likely redeploy its forces from the eastern Homs countryside to the eastern Hama countryside pocket before resuming its advance towards Deir Ezzor.