The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) – backed by the Al-Ba’ath Brigades (Liwaa Al-Ba’ath), Hezbollah (Party of God), and the National Defense Forces (NDF) – continued their success north of Handarat, capturing the strategic Steel Plant and the neighboring factories in its vicinity from the Islamic Front (Jabhat Al-Islamiyya). This operation began in conjunction with the SAA’s offensive at the Handarat Camp, where the latter has now secured the gates in this area.
According to a Syrian military source, 23 militants from the Islamic Front were reportedly killed and another 14 were recorded as wounded after the fierce firefights at the Steel Plant. The source further added that the loyalists suffered 11 casualties during their operations in the vicinity of the Steel Plant and Handarat Factories.
Fierce firefights engulfed the Handarat Refugee Camp this morning, as the SAA attempted to force the Islamic Front militants to either retreat or surrender inside the camp. The Handarat Refugee Camp is under Syrian Army fire control; however, there is still a large presence of fighters from the Islamic Front inside the camp that are resisting. Unfortunately for the Islamic Front, they are at the mercy of the Syrian Army and its allies, who now control the gates to the camp.
Yesterday, the Islamic Front’s “Ahrar Al-Sham” (Liberators of the Levant”) militant group attempted to launch a counter-offensive near Al-Mallah Farms – they were forestalled during their attempted breach of the SAA’s frontline defenses. If the militants from Ahrar Al-Sham are unable to retake Al-Mallah, they will face a hopeless situation in northeast Aleppo, due to the SAA’s imminent arrival at the Al-Castillo Roundabout.