Damascus Countryside, SANA – Following months of operations against terrorists who had entrenched themselves in the town, the Syrian Arab Army established control of al-Mleiha in Damascus Countryside on Thursday, August 14.
A statement issued by the General Command of the Army and Armed Forces said that Syrian Arab Army units, assisted by civil defense groups, managed to carry out the task of restoring security and stability to al-Mleiha and the surrounding farms in the Eastern Ghouta area.
The statement said that this was achieved following a series of decisive special operations in which the army eliminated large numbers of terrorists who were holed up in the town and had been using it as a base from which to carry out terrorist operations and attacks on civilians.
The General Command said that with al-Mleiha under control, the Syrian Army has effectively closed the noose on the remaining pockets of terrorists in the Eastern Ghouta, and established a springboard from which these terrorists can be eliminated completely.
The General Command vowed to continue its diligent efforts to combat terrorism and rid Syria of its evil, urging all those who were misled into bearing arms against the state to turn themselves in and benefit from amnesty decrees.
A field commander in the Syrian Army told SANA’s correspondent that the army inflicted heavy losses upon terrorists in terms of personnel and equipment, noting that terrorists were afraid of the idea of al-Mleiha slipping from their grasp because they viewed it as a gateway to enter Damascus through Jaramana and the capital’s southern areas.
He explained that the significance given to this town by terrorists resulted in it becoming a reservoir of terrorists from outside Syria, with Saudis, Tunisians, Algerians, Qataris, Joradnians, Yemenis, and others of foreign nationalities joining the ranks of the terrorist organizations operating there under names like “Al-Rahman Legion, Islam Army, Islamic Union of Ajnad al-Cham, and al-Qa’qa’a
Brigade,” but foremost among these terrorist groups was the notorious Jabhat al-Nusra.
The field commander said that terrorist turned al-Mleiha into their first line of defense, barricading themselves in residential areas after they forced the locals to flee, littering its streets with landmines and IEDs, and digging a network of tunnels beneath it.
Geographically speaking, the town is connected to numerous other towns in an organic manner with no clear borders between them, falling on a road running south to north up to Douma countryside.
The field commander stated that the battle against terrorism in the Eastern Ghouta will become much easier now that al-Mleiha is secured, particularly since large numbers of terrorists were eliminated there, some of them snipers.
Political analyst Afif Dalla asserted that restoring security to al-Mleiha is of critical importance due to its strategic location in Eastern Ghouta, saying that the operations carried out there by the army were very careful and deliberate in terms of geography and timing.
He added that this achievement will have tremendous effects on the course of the battle in Damascus Countryside as their loss of al-Mleiha has had a devastating effect on the morale of terrorist organizations that have suffered consecutive defeats and are weakened by infighting and current international and regional political shifts.