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Syria’s army is advancing against ISIS militants in the central Homs province, and has encircled terrorists in the al-Hael oil field near the ancient city of Palmyra, Syrian state news agency SANA reported on Wednesday.
Army units are currently less than a mile away from the al-Hael oil field, and are closing in on ISIS militants in the field from the west, south, and southeast, SANA quoted a military source as saying.
Separately, Syrian Army forces have targeted ISIS hideouts west of the eastern city of Deir Ezzor, killing many terrorists.
Last month, the army recaptured the Ark oil field, some 25 miles northeast of Palmyra, from the Islamic State terrorists. The Ark region is of strategic importance to Syria’s economy as it has many oil wells, according to a field commander who spoke to SANA then.
On the larger front, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by a US-led coalition, are about to make ISIS give up its de facto ‘capital’ of Raqqa, in northern Syria. The terrorists claimed Raqqa as their ‘capital’ three years ago, but now the US-backed alliance of Kurdish and Arab forces is close to driving ISIS out of Raqqa as the Islamist militants are in retreat in both Syria and Iraq.
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Coalition forces supported the SDF advance into the most heavily fortified portion of Raqqa, by opening two small gaps in the Rafiqah Wall that surrounds the old city, the U.S. Department of Defense said on Tuesday, quoting Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials.
“Conducting targeted strikes on two small portions of the wall allowed coalition and partner forces to breach the old city at a location of their choosing, denied ISIS the ability to use pre-positioned mines, roadside and car bombs, protected SDF and civilian lives, and preserved the integrity of the greatest portion of the wall,” the U.S. Department of Defense said.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.