On November 9, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and National Defense Forces (NDF) captured al-Rashadiya village south of Khanasir town in the southwestern Aleppo countryside, according to the Hezbollah media wing in Syria.
Syrian opposition sources reported that Syrian and Russian warplanes conducted more than 200 airstrikes against positions of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda) and its allies in southeastern Aleppo and northern Hama during the last 24 hours.
A black square shows the location of clashes in southwestern Aleppo:
From its side, the US-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) group, Jaysh al-Izza, announced that four of its fighters were killed during clashes with the SAA in the northern Hama countryside on November 8.
On the same day Jaysh al-Nasr – also an US-backed FSA group – announced that two of its fighters were killed by the SAA also in the northern Hama countryside.
يزف لكم جيش العزة ثلة من مقاتليه على جبهات ريف حماة الشرقي pic.twitter.com/cox2qJgMWo
— جيش العزة (@alaza_army) November 8, 2017
Jaysh al-Izza and Jaysh al-Nasr are the main allies of HTS in Idlib governorate. The both groups were armed with US-made TOW Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGM) by the US-led block during the Obama administration.
Meanwhile, Syrian pro-government sources reported that the SAA redeployed 300 NDF fighters from Daraa governorate to the northern Hama countryside. These NDF fighters will boost the ongoing limited military operation against HTS in the northern Hama countryside.
Accordung to pro-government sources, the SAA military buildup in the northern Hama countryside and southwestern Aleppo countryside is likely a part of wider plan to launch a military operation against HTS in Idlib governorate after defeating ISIS.
Back on November 8, Ali Akbar Velayati, a top adviser to Iran Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, expressed that the SAA and its allies will set off to capture Idlib governorate and eastern Syria after defeating ISIS.