The Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP-GC) and the Palestine Liberation Army (PLA) carried out an ambush on Al-Nusra Front (Jabhat Al-Nusra) militants on 5th St. inside the Yarmouk Camp District of the Rif Dimashq Governorate yesterday. The PFLP-GC and PLA ambush resulted in the death of 13 militants from the Al-Nusra Front, including 2 prominent leaders identified as “Abu Mohammad” and a Jordanian man named “Abu ‘Ali Al-‘Urdoni”. Cited among the wounded fighters was a notorious aide to the leader of the Al-Nusra Front, “Abu Ja’afar”, who is believed in critical condition after the attack.
Fighting has recently intensified inside the once prosperous Palestinian district after the Al-Nusra Front militants’ cutoff water to the remaining 16,000 civilians living inside the Yarmouk Camp. Lieutenant Ghazi Al-Ghazi – a PLA fighter – stated that the rebels have reneged on multiple ceasefire agreements which have led to the increased bloodshed inside the district’s boundaries. The Lieutenant added that most firefights have taken place on 30th St. and Baghdad St., where the militants have blockaded supplies to a few thousand civilians.
While the Yarmouk Camp continues to suffer from this armed conflict, the neighboring district of Hajar Al-Aswad (“The Black Stone”) has quietly seen the rise of Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) fighters within its borders. Hajar Al-Aswad – like Yarmouk Camp – possessed a large Palestinian population that has since fled the district and taken refuge in the PLA-controlled Jaramana Camp (not to be confused with the city). The district itself has seen dissipation in the civilian population; meanwhile, rebel groups have supplemented this decrease with a rise of armed militants that have fled reconciled villages and cities nearby.
In the East Ghouta, the Syrian Arab Army’s 105th Brigade of the Republican Guard killed the Kuwaiti leader of “Kataeb Al-Islamiyya” (Islamic Forces), Ghandi Al-Jaraah, inside the city of Kaft Batna on early Wednesday morning. Al-Jaraah is believed to have spent 2 years fighting with rebel forces inside Syria, spending most of his time with Jabhat Al-Nusra and Jaysh Al-Islam.
Elsewhere, the 105th Brigade carried out a number of military operations near the West Cemetery in the rebel-held village of ‘Ayn Tarma, resulting in the death of 14 Jaysh Al-Islam militants. Violent clashes are still ongoing inside the city, with the 105th Brigade and Jaysh Al-Islam exchanging a barrage of gunfire and mortar shells.
The 4th Mechanized Division of the Syrian Arab Army has continued its offensive in the villages of Zibdeen and Balaa, where Jaysh Al-Islam has reinforced their positions in order to combat the 4th Divisions heavy armory. Earlier today, the 4th Division was able to enter west Zibdeen after storming rebel fortifications that were recaptured last week by Jaysh Al-Islam.
Hezbollah and National Defense Forces (NDF) countered an Al-Nusra Front infiltration attempt into central Rankous; their attack resulted in the withdrawal of the latter’s forces inside the village. An NDF source has confirmed the withdrawal of Al-Nusra Front fighters to the outskirts of Rankous following the counter-assault by the NDF and Hezbollah. He further added that the increase in rebel activity on the border of Lebanon is a direct result of the Lebanese Army’s presence in the ‘Arsaal District.