BEIRUT, July 16. /ITAR-TASS/. Syrian troops have rebuffed a counterattack of gunmen from the Jebhat al-Nusra extremist group in Jubara, eastern outskirts of Damascus, overnight to Wednesday. The government forces have killed dozens of terrorists who tried to break out from the encircled area, TV channel al-Manar reported.
Several strong bomb blasts rocked the Syrian capital as Syrian warplanes delivered air strikes on a building which gunmen used as their base.
Strongholds of gunmen were also destroyed in the neighborhood of Han-el-Sheikh, west of Damascus. Fifteen Islamic Front mujahedeens were killed in raids on farms in the suburbs of Douma, 12km away from the Syrian capital.
A breakthrough attempt by a group of mercenaries was rebuffed on the Lebanese-Syrian border in Ras-el-Maar. Syrian army units inflicted major losses on the enemy. Warplanes and long-range artillery guns have shelled mountain gorges where gunmen were hiding.
An alarming situation has emerged east of Aleppo in the district of Kobani, where the majority of the population are Kurds. Gunmen from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) are advancing on the region from Racca on the Euphrates River. Kurdish self-defense forces are waging bloody battles with bellicose Islamists who are storming the city of Ain-el-Arab. More than 800 fighters from Kurdistan Workers’ Party were transferred from bordering Turkish districts to help them, al-Manar reported.
Military commander Murad Karayilan said the defense of Kobani was “a matter of life and death for the Kurds". In his view, surrendering this district will open a free way for ISIS gunmen to the Turkish border and province al-Hasika in north-eastern Syria, where Kurds also live.
Eastern province Deir ez-Zor has been brought under ISIS control by 95%, as ISIS militants there had defeated other armed groups rivalling with them for control over Syrian oil fields, newspaper al-Sharq al-Awsat reported on Tuesday.