Syrian War Daily – 15th of January 2018

Hello and welcome to the 307th installment of the SWD.

Military events/news are listed below by the governorates:

Aleppo:

Syrian Arab Army made limited advances against the rebel forces in the southwestern Aleppo governorate, after clearing the rebel pocket in Jabal al-Hoss region. Syrian Arab Army reportedly captured Marhamiyah, Sheikh Khalil and Hawbar from the rebels, while the latter regained control of Tell Shahid, Uwaynat, and Tell Abu Ruwayl, which were briefly captured by the Syrian Arab Army.

Free Traders Union in TFSA-held northern Aleppo released a statement objecting to the Syrian Interim Government’s decision to close commercial crossing points with the Syrian Democratic Forces and only keep open Abu al-Zindeen crossing between TFSA-held areas of northern Aleppo and SAA-held city of Aleppo. The union stated that the decision only benefits the Syrian Arab Army. Head of the Free Traders Union, Mohammed al-Haj Said is expected to meet with the Prime Minister of the Syrian Interim Government, Jawad Abu Hatab in order to discuss the newly-created issue. Mohammed al-Haj Said stated that if they do not reach a positive conclusion, they will discuss the issue directly with Turkey.

Approximate situation in the southwestern Aleppo. Source: Emmanuel

Raqqa:

Two left over Islamic State’s improvised explosive devices killed two and wounded two civilians in the city of Raqqa. The first incident occurred in Al-Mahatta district, killing two civilians as they were inspecting their home. The second incident took place on Al-Qitar street, wounding two civilians.

Idlib:

Rebel factions briefly captured Saloumiyah and Jadaiyah from the Syrian Arab Army in the southern Idlib. Rebels seized several vehicles from the two localities before they were recaptured by the Syrian Arab Army. Syrian Arab Army also recaptured Atshan and Sham al-Hawa, which were captured by the rebels yesterday.

Islamic State made large advances against Hayat Tahrir al-Sham in southern Idlib – southern Aleppo region, by capturing over a dozen of villages. Islamic State captured Muraijib al-Shamali, Rasm al-Barjis, Al-Harsh, Rasm al-Mafkar, Malilah Kabirah, Sawwanat al-Hamrah, Azilah, Al-Dahiriyah, Thalijah, Al-Maslahah, Tell al-Shur, Abu Darikah, and Al-Batushiyah.

Improvised explosive device targeted the vehicle of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham’s Sharia official, near Al-Jarrah roundabout in the city of Idlib. The official was reportedly wounded in the explosion, but his identity remains unknown. Separately, improvised explosive device wounded a civilian, near the post office in Al-Dana.

Hayat Tahrir al-Sham’s senior figure, Jamal Zinia (Abu Malik al-Tali) launched a new campaign named Qatihulum (Combatants). The campaign is aimed at training one thousand fighters for “jihad” and will be directly supervised by Abu Malik al-Tali. However, objectives of the campaign weren’t specified, as well as where will the newly-trained fighters be deployed. This fueled rumors about Abu Malik al-Tali splitting from Abu Mohammad al-Joulani and Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, by creating “Jaysh al-Sham fi al-Shamal” (Levant Army in the North). Abu Malik al-Tali was Jabhat al-Nusra’s emir in the Western Qalamoun region and arrived in Idlib in the August of 2017, after an evacuation deal was reached with Hezbollah.

Approximate situation in the southern Idlib – southern Aleppo region, after Islamic State’s advances. HD version of this map can be found here. Source: Qasioun News Agency

Hama:

Syrian Arab Army captured Hajilah and Tell Mushayrifah from the Islamic State in the northern Hama.

Approximate situation in northern Hama. Source: Suriyak

Deir al-Zour:

Syrian Democratic Forces and Islamic State clashed at the outskirts of Hajin, as the latter attempted to open a route through which they could evacuate the locality with their families towards Islamic State-held desertous area between Homs and Deir al-Zour governorates. Syrian Democratic Forces also made limited advances in Hajin, due to heavy IS’ resistance in the locality. Reports suggest that 27 Islamic State’s elements were killed in the clashes for Hajin.

Islamic State’s Amaq Agency reported that the group launched an anti-tank guided missile against Syrian Democratic Forces’ gathering, killing five elements at the outskirts of Al-Bahra village, northwest of Hajin.

Left over Islamic State’s improvised explosive device wounded two civilians in the Syrian Democratic Forces-held village of Al-Shuhail in the eastern Deir al-Zour.

Approximate situation in the eastern Deir al-Zour. Source: Emmanuel

Damascus:

Syrian Arab Army’s artillery and Syrian Arab Air Force targeted Hammouriyah, Douma, Mesraba, Saqba, Arbeen and Harasta in the East Ghouta. Reports suggest that a civilian was killed and four wounded by the shelling of Mesraba.

Syrian Arab Army launched another assault on Jaysh al-Islam-held Al-Nashabiyah area in the East Ghouta and reportedly captured Tell Firzat, west of Al-Nashabiyah. However, Jaysh al-Islam’s spokesman, Hamza Birqdar denied Syrian Arab Army’s control over Tell Firzat and also stated that the Syrian Arab Army launched several attacks in the area, failing to capture anything. Tell Firzat should be treated as disputed for now.

Al-Suwayda:

Unknown gunmen targeted Saraya al-Difae al-Dhati (Self-Defense Companies/Brigades) checkpoint near Ara with explosives. The explosions at the checkpoint didn’t cause any casualties and only damaged the checkpoint’s infrastructure.

Iraq

Nineveh:

Al-Hashd al-Shaabi’s (Popular Mobilization Units) Al-Liwa al-Awl (1st Brigade/Division) foiled Islamic State’s attack south of Tell Safouk, near the Syrian-Iraqi border. Al-Hashd al-Shaabi shelled Islamic State’s gathering, killing two elements and destroying one vehicle, forcing the remaining elements to withdraw from the area.

Kirkuk:

Islamic State’s Amaq Agency reported that the group launched security operation against Al-Hashd al-Shaabi elements in the village of Al-Safra, southwest of Kirkuk. According to the Amaq Agency, two elements of Al-Hashd al-Shaabi were killed and four wounded in the operation.

Baghdad:

Twin suicide bombing hit Tayaran square in the center of Baghdad, killing 35 and wounding more than 90 civilians.

Afghanistan

Faryab Province:

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (Taliban) overran and destroyed Afghan National Army’s checkpoint in Qazal area of Qaysar district. Six elements of the Afghan National Army were killed and two captured, while an element of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan was wounded in the encounter. Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan seized three assault rifles and a PK machine gun from the checkpoint.

Five elements of the Afghan Local Police were wounded in the clashes with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in Chichakto area of Qaysar district.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan repelled Afghan National Security Forces’ attack in Qaflan area of Pashtun Kot district.

Balkh Province:

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan seized Afghan Local Police’s post in Chimtal district, killing one element of the local police in the initial attack. Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan also engaged Afghan Local Police’s reinforcements arriving at the post, wounding four elements and destroying a tank with an RPG.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan raided Afghan Local Police’s post, killing four, including a commander and wounding two elements in Charbolak district. Separately, Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan assassinated Afghan Local Police’s commander in Charbolak district.

Kunduz Province:

Afghan National Security Forces killed three elements of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan and destroyed several weapons depots and ammunition caches in Archi (Dasht-e Archi) district.

Approximate situation in Kunduz province, HD version of this map can be found here. Source: Afganistan Bülteni

Baghlan Province:

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan repelled Afghan National Army’s attack and reportedly destroyed two tanks in Puli Khumri district. Separately, two elements of the Afghan National Army were reportedly killed and additional four wounded during the clashes with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in Puli Khumri district.

Kunar Province:

Afghan National Security Forces killed an element of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in Dara-I-Pech district.

Afghan National Army’s element was killed and two wounded in the clashes with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in Chapa Dara district.

Kabul Province:

Afghan National Security Forces killed six and wounded four elements of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in Surobi district. Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan reported that it counterattacked Afghan National Security Forces’ offensive in Surobi district, killing 12 soldiers in the counterattack. Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan also reported that it seized three assault rifles, three heavy machine guns, and large quantities of ammunition.

Laghman Province:

Afghan National Army’s element was killed and another two wounded during the clashes with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in the city of Mihtarlam, capital of Laghman Province.

Nangarhar Province:

Afghan National Security Forces killed ten and arrested two fighters of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in Ghani Khel district. Afghan National Security Forces also conducted operations against the Islamic State in the province, killing ten elements of the group.

Islamic State assassinated an element of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in the city of Jalalabad, capital of Nangarhar Province.

Approximate situation in Nangarhar province (red = Afghan National Security Forces, blue = Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, and yellow = Islamic State), HD version of this map can be found here. Source: Afganistan Bülteni

Maidan Wardak Province:

Afghan National Army’s element was killed and another wounded in clashes with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in Saydabad district.

Ghazni Province:

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan ambushed elements of the Afghan National Army at the outskirts of the city of Ghazni, which resulted in clashes between the two sides. According to the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, seven soldiers of the Afghan National Army were killed and 11 wounded in the encounter.

Farah Province:

Afghan National Security Forces conducted large-scale operations against the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, killing 28 elements of the group in Khaki Safed district. Furthermore, Afghan National Security Forces wounded ten elements of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan and destroyed two vehicles, three motorcycles and several weapons depots and ammunition caches. Among the 28 killed Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s elements are the group’s deputy governor Sardar Askhan Bekhashi and two local commanders, Golestani and Abdul Shakur.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan overran Afghan National Police’s checkpoint in the 2nd Police District of the city of Farah. Five Afghan National Police’s elements, including a commander were killed and two wounded in the encounter, as well as a pickup destroyed. Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan seized five assault rifles from the checkpoint.

Approximate situation in Farah province, HD version of this map can be found here. Source: Afganistan Bülteni

Urozgan Province:

Afghan National Security Forces killed six fighters of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan and destroyed two bases in the city of Tarinkot, capital of Urozgan Province. Afghan National Security Forces also destroyed several weapons depots and ammunition caches.

Helmand Province:

Afghan National Security Forces killed 14 elements of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan in Nahri Saraj and Garmsir districts. Furthermore, a vehicle, three motorcycles, and several weapons depots and ammunition caches were destroyed.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan captured and destroyed Afghan National Police’s checkpoint on Kandahar highway in Dorahi area of Sangin district, killing six elements and forcing others to retreat. Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan seized an RPG launcher, a PK machine gun, and four assault rifles from the checkpoint.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan raided Afghan National Police’s checkpoint in the vicinity of Haji Tor area in Jerash district. Seven elements of the Afghan National Police were killed and wounded, while three Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan elements were wounded in the raid.

Two Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s elements infiltrated Afghan National Police’s checkpoint in Parchaw area of Jerash district. The infiltrators killed two elements of the Afghan National Police and seized a PK machine gun, four assault rifles, and a mortar tube, before joining up with the nearby Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s elements.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s improvised explosive device reportedly killed three elements of the Afghan National Security Forces in the vicinity of Haji Jang Agha area of Nawa-I-Barakzayi district.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s sniper killed one and wounded two elements of the Afghan National Army in Seydano area of Nawa-I-Barakzayi district.

Approximate situation in Hemland province, HD version of this map can be found here. Source: Afganistan Bülteni

CJTF-OIR:

CJTF-OIR announced a change in their publishing policy. Now two strikes reports will be published each week, on Mondays and Fridays.

FireShot Capture 18 - - http___www.inherentresolve.mil_Portals_14_11Nov2017_20171106CJTF-OIR%

Amaq Agency:

Egypt:

Islamic State’s improvised explosive device damaged Egyptian Army’s vehicle in Al-Touma area, south of the city of Al-Sheikh Zuwaid in the North Sinai Governorate.

Other:

Intellectual credited property used may vary from an edition to edition.

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